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Energy policy research team

Policy work by the team

Read more about our energy policy work.

Victoria MacGregor, Director of Energy

Victoria MacGregor joined Citizens Advice as the Director of Energy in July 2016. She was previously Chief Officer of Citizens Advice Dacorum, in Hertfordshire, responsible for all aspects of running the charity and leading its team of staff and volunteers. Prior to this Victoria spent 12 years at EDF Energy, where, as Head of Public Affairs, she developed and led the energy company’s political engagement and influencing work. Victoria has also worked in advertising and marketing and is currently a Non Executive Director of Smart Energy GB.

Dhara Vyas, Head of Smart and Sustainable Energy

Since August 2015 Dhara has led the team working on new and emerging energy supply and services markets to protect and promote the interests of consumers, current and future. This includes the smart meter rollout and implementation plans, household energy efficiency programmes and renewables policy areas. Dhara joined Consumer Focus in 2009 as a Policy Manager in the retail team, leading work on vulnerable energy consumers, with a focus on affordability, debt, disconnection, advice and redress. Before that Dhara led NCVO’s work on local government, and has a wide range of strategic policy experience from across the public and voluntary sector, having worked across various policy areas including voluntary sector policy, engagement, local authority performance management, scrutiny, localism and devolved budgeting.

Read Dhara's blogs.

Gillian Cooper, Head of Retail Energy Markets

As Head of Retail Energy Markets, Gillian leads the organisation's policy work on retail energy markets, covering issues affecting domestic and micro-business consumers, such as tariffs and billing, complaints handling and the treatment of vulnerable consumers in Great Britain and Europe. She also leads the energy team's compliance and enforcement process, monitoring and analysing consumer data from across the Service and working with industry and the regulator to deliver improvements in policies and processes. Another area of focus for the team is developing the organisation's work on reputational regulation of suppliers. The team works closely with the Extra Help Unit, which provides specialist case handling support to vulnerable energy consumers. Gillian has been a consumer advocate in the energy sector for over 10 years, working for energywatch and Consumer Focus. Previously she was deputy head of the corporate research department at a business and economics publisher specialising in emerging markets.

Read Gillian's blogs.

Stew Horne, Principal Policy Manager - Energy Regulation

Stew leads the Energy Regulation team, which focuses on how the energy system and networks are regulated in the interests of consumers. Stew’s background is in government and energy regulation. During 4 years at Ofgem he lead work on consumer empowerment, prepayment meters and the Confidence Code. Earlier in his career Stew worked on a number of high profile consumer projects in central government including nutritional labelling and digital television switchover.

Colin Griffiths, Policy Manager

Colin is part of the Smart and Sustainable team, leading on smart metering and smart homes with the goal of ensuring that the rollout of smart meters delivers a net benefit to consumers and keeps their needs at its heart. His work focusses particularly on the consumer experience of smart metering, ensuring consumers retain control and transparency of how their data is used and technical issues with potential impacts on consumers. He sits on a range of government and industry working groups and boards. He is also involved in wider issues around smart homes and new data-driven consumer services as well as consumer data issues more widely.

Victoria Pelka, Senior Policy Researcher

Victoria joined Citizens Advice in 2016. She works as part of the Energy Regulation team to monitor the performance of energy network companies and the impact of regulatory changes on consumers. She leads our work on smart and flexible networks, the DNO-DSO transition, and networks’ stakeholder engagement. Before joining Citizens Advice, Victoria worked as a research consultant, evaluating charity and government projects in the UK and abroad. She holds an MSc in Environmental Policy and Regulation from the LSE.

Joel Atherton, Senior Policy Researcher

Joel joined Citizens Advice in 2017. He works in the Energy Regulation Team, ​a major focus of his work is ​scrutinising network companies' price controls and how networks are regulated in the interests of consumers. Previously he was researching his PhD at the LSE, and he holds an MSc in Environmental Economics and Climate Change from the LSE. Earlier in his career Joel worked for a number of not-for-profit and environmental policy organisations.

Jake Beavan, Senior Policy Researcher

Jake started at Citizens Advice in January 2016, leading the energy team's work on vulnerability. He has a particular focus on how the energy market works for vulnerable consumers and what impact changes such as the introduction of smart meters will have on this. Before joining Citizens Advice, Jake worked as a political adviser in the Local Government Association.

Jennifer Lucas-Williams, Policy Manager

Jenni joined the Retail Energy Markets Team as a Policy Manager in April 2014. The team works on GB and European policy and regulation affecting the retail energy market. Jenni's main area of focus is around developing our work on the reputational regulation of suppliers. Particularly with regard to the publication of supplier complaints and customer service performance. Other areas she is currently working on include our work on billing and Third Party Intermediaries / Price Comparison Websites. Prior to joining Citizens Advice, Jenni worked as the Confidence Code Manager at Consumer Futures where she was responsible for running a code of practice for energy switching websites.

Read Jenni's blogs.

Peter Broad, Senior Policy Researcher

Peter is the team’s lead on energy efficiency policy. He is working to make sure current and future policies deliver high quality energy efficiency measures to the consumers that need them, while delivering value for money and consumer protection. He represents consumers on government and industry working groups, such as the Energy Company Obligation delivery group.

Before joining Citizens Advice, Peter worked on energy policy for our predecessor organisations, Consumer Focus and Consumer Futures. He previously worked in Brussels on EU policy and funding for local authorities.

Read Peter's blogs.

Zoe Guijarro, Policy Manager

Zoe joined the Smart and Sustainable Energy Team in February 2015 to lead policy work on renewable heat and community energy. The main focus of work in this area is GB wide but it also includes aspects of this work at the European level. Zoe's work is concentrated on building up the evidence-base for better consumer engagement in these areas to help inform Citizens Advice in its advocacy on the future of low carbon heating and decentralised energy solutions. Before joining Citizens Advice Zoe worked as a Climate & Energy Specialist at WWF-UK leading their advocacy on energy efficiency, zero carbon homes and low-carbon heat.

Read Zoe's blogs.

Alexander Belsham-Harris, Senior Policy Researcher

Alex joined the retail energy team in July 2015. He leads our work on switching and billing, in particular the ongoing developments in the areas of smart billing and switching reform. Prior to this he worked in our Smart and Sustainable team, monitoring the consumer experience of smart meters. Before joining Citizens Advice, Alex worked at Ofgem on sustainable energy policy.

Rajni Nair, Senior Policy Researcher (interim)

Rajni joined the Smart and Sustainable team in October 2016. She monitors the consumer experience of smart meters and regularly attends government and industry working groups advocating for consumer protections, where necessary. Alongside this, she also works on sustainability issues, including heat and energy efficiency. Before joining Citizens Advice, she worked for the Welsh Government as a safeguarding and deprivation officer within education.

Alice Brett, Policy Researcher

Alice joined the Retail Energy Team in September 2016.  She helps monitor energy supplier performance on a broad range of consumer issues such as billing, metering or switching supplier. She also analyses trends in the market, including trends in tariffs and complaints data.

Andy Regan, Senior Policy Officer (Wales)

Andy is a member of the Smart and Sustainable Energy team, and is based in Cardiff. He works with colleagues in the wider Energy team to ensure our work takes account of the devolved policy context, represents that work in Wales, and manages Wales-specific energy research. He jointly coordinates the Fuel Poverty Coalition Cymru with NEA Cymru.

Prior to joining Citizens Advice Andy worked for Consumer Futures Wales, for the Older People’s Commissioner for Wales for three years leading on financial issues affecting older people, and has also worked in the Wales Office.

Elizabeth Errington, Senior Policy Researcher

Elizabeth joined the Retail Team in 2017. Her main area of interest is in delivering leading research on domestic and micro business consumer experience to ensure appropriate regulation and policy in energy markets. Prior to joining Citizen Advice, Elizabeth worked on on affordability challenges in the UK energy markets in industry and as an academic researcher.

James Kerr, Senior Policy Researcher

James joined Citizens Advice in January 2018 on secondment from National Grid where he facilitated customer connections to the GB transmission and distribution networks. Prior to National Grid, he worked at Groundwork Cheshire delivering projects, such as the Green Doctor programme and new playgrounds, to vulnerable communities.

Ceri Beynon-Davies, Policy Researcher

Ceri is part of the Energy Regulation and Networks team. He works to monitor the performance of energy network companies and the impact of regulatory changes on consumers, particularly in distribution networks, and also to assess the impacts that future technological developments will have on networks and consumers. Prior to working in the Energy team, Ceri worked as a researcher in the Post & Telecoms team on postal services markets, within local growth policy at HM Treasury, in local government and has also supported environmental NGOs in Wales.

David Stoker, Policy Researcher

David joined the Retail Energy Team in February 2018. He helps monitor how energy suppliers are treating their customers and has a particular focus on policy related to prepayment meters, debt and vulnerability. Before joining Citizens Advice David worked as a primary school teacher and on project evaluation for various projects in the charity and public sectors.