Alice Gunn

Project title:

The impact of energy system modelling tools for policy design

Partner Organisation:

SSE (Scottish Southern Energy) 

First Supervisor:

Dr Phil Coker

Second Supervisor:

Dr Ben Potter

Project description:

A number of models are being developed by different organisations including Governments across the world to help understand the impact that policy interventions and new technologies could have in meeting carbon targets and at the least cost. These have varying objectives and focus and consequently use different tools. This project will analyse the existing models and the techniques to understand the current capability of whole energy systems modelling. Additionally this project aims to understand the role that modelling has and could play in decision making by both investors and by Government.

SSE is a broad based energy company interested in the whole sector including generation, transmission, distribution and supply therefore has a strong interest in understanding the effects a change can have on all parts of the energy system.

Project poster:

Download Alice Gunn TSBE poster (PDF - 286KB)

Student profile:

My interest in the energy sector began during my undergraduate degree where I specialised in Atmospheric Chemistry. Following this I opted to further develop my knowledge of the sector by studying for an MSc in Energy Policy. Since graduating I have worked in SSE's policy team where my main focus has been on energy efficiency and small scale generation policy.

Associated/Relevant Research Groups/Centres:

 My linked in page:


Conference papers

Gunn, A. Coker, P. Potter, B. MacRae, A. 2015. The use of energy system modelling in policy development and decision making. 5th Annual TSBE EngD Conference Proceedings, University of Reading.

Gunn, A. Coker, P. Potter, B. MacRae, A. 2016. Analysing Shetland's future energy system challenges using two energy system models. 6th Annual TSBE EngD Conference Proceedings, University of Reading.

Gunn, A. Coker, P. Potter, B. MacRae, A. 2017. Stakeholder perceptions of energy system models and their role in policymaking. 7th Annual TSBE EngD Conference Proceedings, University of Reading.


  • Powerhouse2030 steering committee member

    • Winner of KPMG sponsored Powerhouse2030
    • Young Energy Professional of the Year 2016

Expected completion date:


Why did you chose Reading:

The EngD programme at Reading offers an opportunity to combine the expertise of the TSBE centre, which attracts a variety of different projects and industrial sponsors, whilst retaining a strong link with industry and gaining practical experience. The particular project that I am working on provides me with the opportunity to deepen my understanding of the energy system and increase my modelling skills.


  • BSc Chemistry, University of Bristol
  • MSc Energy Policy, University of Exeter



Things to do now

  • 0118 378 8533


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