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Personal profile

Research interests

Dr. Stephen Allen is a Lecturer (Assistant Professor) with research interests in the fields of energy analysis, carbon footprinting and life cycle assessment.  He works in interdisciplinary teams to improve the way we use energy in our buildings, and to develop sustainable construction materials.  The purpose is to minimise both the operational and embodied carbon emissions of the built environment.  Current projects include the £36m Active Buildings Centre, which is designing and constructing buildings that produce more energy than they use. 

Dr. Allen previously worked as the Energy Adviser at the Parliamentary Office of Science and Technology, and as an energy and environmental consultant in industry.  This provided experience of how practical improvements and policy changes occur in practice, which he draws on in his research and teaching.  Stephen’s publications have been used by MPs, select committees and the Committee on Climate Change, supporting the development and scrutiny of public policy.  His work has also featured in professional magazines to inform debate and practice in industry.  Over six years as a senior consultant and then director at companies in Bristol, Stephen helped both the public and private sectors to reduce the environmental impacts of buildings, rail transport and consumer products. 

Stephen has a First-Class M.Eng. (Hons, 2005) and Ph.D. (2009) in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Bath.  His doctoral and post-doctoral research focused on sustainable energy technologies for buildings.  He won the prestigious George Stephenson Prize from the Institution of Mechanical Engineers in 2008, and a place on the USA’s International Visitor Leadership Programme on climate change and renewable energy in 2012.  He is conversationally fluent in Spanish.

Willing to supervise PhD

I am currently advertising for two PhD positions, both with a deadline of end April:

  • "Is building-integrated energy storage a good idea?". See here for details.
  • "Energy Positive Cities: meeting future urban energy needs with Active Buildings". See here for details.

I am generally interested in supervising students studying:

  • Low energy and low carbon design of buildings
  • Sustainable building materials
  • Sustainable energy technologies
  • Thermodynamics and heat transfer
  • Carbon footprinting
  • Life cycle assessment

External positions

Member of Engineering Early Career Forum, Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council


Director, Circular Ecology Ltd.


Senior Associate, Sustain Ltd


Scientific Adviser - Energy, Parliamentary Office of Science and Technology


Research Officer, SUPERGEN Highly Distributed Power Systems, University of Bath


Mechanical Engineer (Canada and Mexico), Coastal Ecosystems Research Foundation



  • TA Engineering (General). Civil engineering (General)
  • TJ Mechanical engineering and machinery
  • Sustainable energy
  • Renewable energy
  • Thermodynamics
  • Heat transfer
  • Carbon footprinting
  • Energy analysis
  • Life cycle assessment
  • Embodied energy and carbon
  • Building performance analysis

Fingerprint Fingerprint is based on mining the text of the person's scientific documents to create an index of weighted terms, which defines the key subjects of each individual researcher.

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Projects 2018 2022

Research Output 2007 2018

Open Access
environmental policy
environmental management
2 Citations (Scopus)
Open Access
Industrial heating
Hot Temperature

Life Cycle Assessment of Four Microgenerators: Carbon Footprints and Payback Times

Allen, S., McManus, M. & Staffell, I., 24 Jun 2015, Domestic Microgeneration: Renewable and Distributed Energy Technologies, Policies and Economics. Staffell, I., Brett, D. J. L., Brandon, N. P. & Hawkes, A. D. (eds.). Abingdon, U. K.: Routledge, p. 299-318

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

carbon footprint
life cycle
carbon dioxide
fuel cell

An initial assessment of the environmental impact of grocery products

Fisher, K., James, K., Sheane, R., Nippress, J., Allen, S. R., Cherruault, J., Fishwick, M., Lillywhite, R. & Sarrouy, C., Mar 2013, Banbury: Waste and Resources Action Programme. 135 p.

Research output: Book/ReportCommissioned report

Open Access
environmental impact
greenhouse gas

Residential Heat Pumps: POSTnote 426

Allen, S. R. & Wentworth, J., 16 Jan 2013, POST-PN-426 ed. London: Parliamentary Office of Science and Technology . 4 p. (POSTnotes)

Research output: Book/ReportCommissioned report

Open Access
Hot Temperature


Micro-generation for UK Households: Thermodynamic and Related Analysis

Author: Allen, S., 1 Jun 2009

Supervisor: Hammond, G. (Supervisor)

Student thesis: Doctoral ThesisPhD