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Simone Abram

We welcome Simone Abram, Professor in the Department of Anthropology, as the Interim Director of the Durham Energy Institute. She took up this post on 1st September 2023. She became a Co-director of DEI in 2015 and active member of the Executive Team.

Simone has replaced Jon Gluyas, Professor in the Department of Earth Sciences, who has completed his term of office as Director of the DEI and is returning to a research role.  We thank Jon for his leadership of the DEI over the past 6 years and wish him success with his research.

Simone has over 20 years of experience of research and teaching in Social Anthropology and is a respected author on the anthropological or interdisciplinary perspective for an extensive range of energy-related challenges; this work contributes to current debates on the Just Transition.

Simone has been working on research projects with colleagues across Durham for some years and leads the EPSRC EDI+ network for equality, diversity and inclusion in energy research. She is a member of the Research Centre for Socially Inclusive Energy Transitions (Include)funded by the Norwegian Research council, and led by friend of DEI, Prof Tanja Winther at Oslo University.

Other current projects include:

  • GEMSS Geothermal and solar thermal storage REHIP Growing Teesside’s hydrogen economy;
  • catalysing a Just Transition to Net Zero ELEXIA Horizon project on integrated energy systems;
  • ICHP Zero-Carbon Emission Integrated Cooling; and
  • Heating and Power (ICHP) Networks INCLUDE Research centre for socially inclusive energy transitions (Oslo University) POWERPOOR, understanding energy poverty in Norway.

Simone joined Durham University to establish the first interdisciplinary Masters programme in Energy and Society, hosted by the Department of Anthropology for the DEI. In 2020, after 8 successful years, it became the MSc in Sustainability, Energy and Development, and continues to attract students from around the world.

Simone took a BSc/MEng in electrical and electronic engineering at Manchester University, sponsored by GEC Turbine Generators Ltd, but moved swiftly on to study Social and Cultural Anthropology at Oxford University, where she completed a DPhil on heritage, history and tourism in the Auvergne. Since 2000 she has been involved in research in Norway. She speaks fluent Norwegian and French.

Find out more

  • See the fantastic research we do at the Durham Energy Institute
  • Discover more about Professor Simone Abram, Interim Director of the Durham Energy Institute and Professor in our Department of Anthropology
  • Our Anthropology Department is one of the largest in the UK and is ranked 23rd globally by the QS World University Rankings by Subject 2023. Fieldwork is core to our taught programmes, and we offer research-led teaching and hands-on experience to equip our students with the knowledge and skills they need for a successful future.  Feeling inspired? Visit our Anthropology webpages for more information on our undergraduate and postgraduate programmes.
  • Discover more about Professor Jon Gluyas, Ikon Chair in Geoenergy, Carbon Capture & Storage in our Department of Earth Sciences.
  • Our Department of Earth Sciences is ranked in the world top 50 by the QS World University Rankings. The department aspires to help shape the future by providing the highest quality education for our students and by undertaking research that is both intrinsically excellent and relevant to society. Feeling inspired? Visit our Earth Sciences webpages to learn more about our postgraduate and undergraduate programmes.