Four graduate students in the field of science from the University of Copenhagen were conducting hands-on research in Sonderborg, Denmark during the month of March in order to crack the code of energy motivation among young families.

Home energy renovation is already at the top of the agenda of a large number of families in the area of Sonderborg, Southern Denmark. Young family home-owners have a great potential for investing in deep energy renovation as long as they are provided with the right information. Everyday life is busy, money is focused on children, and family. Still, a greater awareness of the family health and comfort benefits of renovating the house could mean a different focus on how larger investments should be prioritized. .

With the ambition to succeed in understanding how to involve young families in energy efficiency, the four students spent Friday and Saturday doing field research by interviewing a real estate agent, a banker, the local energy director in Sønderborg, Charlie Lemtorp, and of course the young families in their homes.

The four students have chosen a special subject, lecturered by Lise Tjørring, PhD at the University of Copenhagen, with a special focus on the role of the families in Sonderborg’s major transformation. For several years, Lise has been following families’ energy decision-making, but not especially focused on young families.


The four students from University of Copenhagen, from left to right: Camilla (The United States), Anne-Sophie (Denmark), Beatriz (Brazil) and Bridget (The United States).

The students’ results are part of ProjectZero’s development work to raise awareness towards young families and families with adolescents.

  • What is the motivation of young families to get started?
  • What is the cost of energy renovation of their house?
  • How are they inspired to get started?
  • What is the role of digital media?

These and many others were the questions for the visited families and other participating stakeholders.