Rising energy costs are pushing an estimated 1 in 4 UK households into fuel poverty. We need a scalable way of targeting and deploying energy-efficient investments to households in, or most at risk of, fuel poverty.



UK Power Networks (UKPN) provides personalised energy-efficiency support to around 13,000 fuel-poor households every year.

As the cost of fuel rises, UKPN expects the number of customers in vulnerable circumstances to grow and will need to increase this service to 100,000 households per year as a result. Identifying those households in need of extra support will be a key challenge.


UrbanTide has partnered with UKPN and Energy Savings Catapult (ESC) on Social Connect, a collaborative project that uses their combined expertise to efficiently deploy personalised energy support to fuel-poor households.

As experts in AI and data science techniques, UrbanTide has provided a powerful data insights platform that integrates cross-sector data to identify those areas most at risk.


1 in 4

The number of households predicted to be in fuel poverty by the end of 2022.


The number of cross-sector data points that are utilised for social connect


increase in UKPN customers expected to need additional energy support.

Combining multiple cross-sector datasets to provide up-to-date identification of fuel poverty risk to help provide targeted support.


Our partnership and shared vision

Our vision for the Social Connect project is to validate the use of data and AI as a tool for tackling fuel poverty. 

We can use data to accurately identify and support fuel-poor households, but also develop a better understanding of the diversity of situations that can make a household fall into fuel poverty before it occurs.

The project will harness the value of smart meter system data to accurately identify the incidence and risk of fuel poverty as part of a wider data integration solution.

About UK Power Networks

UK Power Networks owns and maintains electricity cables and lines across London, the South East and East of England.

UK Power Networks (UKPN) is tackling the climate crisis by connecting renewable energy and low-carbon heating and supporting customers in vulnerable circumstances.

Sustainable Development Goals


Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) provide a shared blueprint for peace and prosperity for people and the planet, now and into the future.


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