Governing through visions: Evaluating the performativity of the European gas target models

Marloes Dignum, Aad Correljé, Martijn Groenleer, Daniel Scholten

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

10 Citations (Scopus)
44 Downloads (Pure)


In 2010 an initiative was launched to realize a competitive single EU market for natural gas through the use of a future vision. This Gas Target Model (GTM) aimed to provide direction for concrete market development through regulatory structures as well as an overarching scope of what a functioning gas market would entail. This paper assesses the use and impact of such sectoral visions. We develop a framework that builds on the sociology of expectations and foresight studies and distinguish between the envisioning process, vision content, and vision use (output). The analysis follows the development of two versions of the GTM: 2011 and 2015. We find that the GTM has a contradictory nature. The vision that feeds into regulatory structures requires a stable and uniform rule set. The overarching vision requires incorporation of long-term uncertainty and adaptability. Moreover, the sectoral focus requires alignment to adjacent sectors and wider policy considerations. This makes it difficult to set boundaries, to identify relevant actors, and to ensure commitment from these actors. We conclude that the former vision was actively pursued and materialized in Framework Guidelines and Network Codes, while the latter vision is just being identified and framed.

Original languageEnglish
JournalEnergy Research and Social Science
Publication statusPublished - 2017


  • EU gas market
  • Gas target model
  • Governance
  • Technological visions


Dive into the research topics of 'Governing through visions: Evaluating the performativity of the European gas target models'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this