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From distribution networks to smart distribution systems: rethinking the regulation of European electricity DSOs

S. Ruester, S. Schwenen, C. Batlle, I.J. Pérez-Arriaga

Distributed energy resources allow for new business models that have the potential to substantially change today's power system functioning paradigm. In particular, these changes pose challenges for distribution system operators (DSOs) and their regulation alike. This article sheds light on missing aspects in current regulation, recognizing DSOs as regulated monopolies, but also as key players along the supply chain. We provide insights on how regulation should be adjusted so that DSOs are incentivized to facilitate the market entry of welfare-enhancing technologies in a timely fashion, and to manage the distribution system efficiently in the presence of distributed energy resources.

Keywords: Electricity distribution; Smart grid; Regulation; Distribution system operator

Utilities Policy. Volume: 31 Pages: 229-237

Journal Impact Factor: JCR impact factor 2.098 (2017)

DOI reference: DOI icon 10.1016/j.jup.2014.03.007    

Published on paper: December 2014. Published on-line: April 2014.

    Topics research:
  • *Energy markets design and regulation
  • *Regulation of energy network infrastructures

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