Smarter Households

Smarter Households






University of Birmingham, University of Edinburgh, Aston University, University of Portsmouth, Orbit Group, E.ON


Smarter Households is a 5 year research project that aims to develop an interactive digital system designed to make it easier for households to see, understand and manage their energy consumption and bills.

The project has 4 stages:

  • To develop an Integrated Meter and Sensor System (IMSS) which supports understanding of consumption through an in-home 3D ‘energy dashboard’, displaying real-time utility use and indoor environmental conditions;
  • To build a Virtual Energy World Game (VEWG) which aims to engage all members of the household with managing their energy use and maintaining a comfortable and healthy home, in a fun and interactive way;
  • To trial the IMSS and VEWG with Orbit Group households in Warwickshire for one year, exploring their daily routines and interactions with the technology;
  • To create low carbon lifestyle activities to broaden the reach of the project through public engagement initiatives.

For more information, please contact Professor Shuli Liu on 024 7765 7822 or email


This research addresses government priorities to reduce energy demand, meet CO2 reduction targets, and reduce domestic reliance on fossil fuels, offering protection from price risks and fuel poverty as well as providing more affordable and comfortable domestic environments.

Householders, Orbit Group and E.ON have been engaged from early in the project in order to shape the aims and co-design the energy dashboard and game. This engagement will also ensure appropriate dissemination of results through housing networks and utility industry events, along with broader public engagement activities through the academic partner institutions.

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