Sustainability First organised a memorial lecture on 17 July 2017 In memory of Gill Owen. The lecture was given by Prof Martin Cave OBE, a former Warwick Business School colleague of Gill. Martin’s very fitting, and highly topical, lecture subject was ‘Distributional and Competition Aspects of Energy Pricing’.
Starting from the essential nature of energy for households, the fact that energy accounts for a larger proportion of expenditure for poorer than for richer households and the estimate of detriment identified in the recent CMA investigation, he described a methodology for approaching distributional fairness. He then went on to consider how innovation and smart meters could help vulnerable customers and to discuss responses to the CMA investigation, including proposals for demand-side remedies and price caps.
An internationally renowned economist, Martin specialises in competition law and the regulation of network industries, especially the communications sector. He is currently a visiting professor at Imperial College Business School and is also a member of the UK Competition and Markets Authority.
As many people commented at the event, the topic would have been close to Gill’s heart and she would have enjoyed immensely debating the issues with Martin.
Sarah Harrison, a Sustainability First Trustee and former Senior Partner at Ofgem responded to the lecture.
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