Hilton Trollip

Research Fellow

Hilton Trollip is an Independent Consultant in Energy research. He is a research fellow in the Global Risk Governance programme. His main interest is transitions: being involved in, studying, politics of, implementing, leading and the sociology of these.

Hilton graduated with an MSc. Electrical Engineering by research in 1983 and conducted conventional engineering research and design for ten years. In the 1990s he played a lead role in a number of national government policy development programmes including co-ordinating the South African Energy Policy White Paper. He held a number of company and SOE board memberships. He was also involved in research and teaching, for example he was Post-Graduate Director of the Energy Studies Programme at the University of Cape Town, Chief Research Manager, Knowledge Management, South African Human Sciences Research Council and Project Manager, 2001/2002 National Research and Development Survey of South Africa.

During his last spell inside government, as Principal Engineer Climate Change at the City of Cape Town from 2011-2013 Hilton became particularly fascinated with the prevalence of difficulties of implementing apparently simple but crucial government policies in the South African energy sector. Following up on this he began building up a research programme at the UCT Energy Research Centre focussing on implementation of energy policy, climate mitigation policy and energy transitions . This has yielded interesting results in many research reports (see publications below) and a few journal articles. For the last two years he has been working to develop this area further, developing research approaches aimed specifically at contributions to the peer-reviewed literature. He has three main research projects: the politics of energy policy; leadership of transitions, and; the role of electricity grids, this last one initially exploring concepts of entanglement (Ian Hodder. 2014. The Entanglements of Humans and Things: A Long-Term View).


1 September 2022. Hilton Trollip speaking on Cape Talk. Mantashe's Eskom 2.0 plan steams aheadListen here >>>

26 July 2022; Hilton Trollip speaks to  Refilwe Moloto, of Cape Talk, about President Cyril Ramaphosa's plan to address the country's energy crisis. Listen here >>>

Selected publications


Froestad, J., Nøkleberg, M., Shearing, C. & Trollip, H. 2018. South Africa’s Minerals-Energy-Complex: Flows, Regulation, Governance and Policing. In: Omorogbe, Y. & Order, A. Eds. Ending Africa's Energy Deficit and the Law: Achieving Sustainable Energy for All in Africa. Oxford University Press.


Hilton Trollip, Bryce McCall & Chris Bataille. 2022. How green primary iron production in South Africa could help global decarbonization, Climate Policy, DOI: 10.1080/14693062.2021.2024123

Katye E. Altieri, Hilton Trollip, Tara Caetano, Alison Hughes, Bruno Merven & Harald Winkler. 2016. Achieving development and mitigation objectives through a decarbonization development pathway in South Africa. Climate Policyhttp://dx.doi.org/10.1080/14693062.2016.1150250.

Dieter Mayr, D., Schmid, E., Trollip, H., Zeyringer, M., & Schmidt, J. 2015. The impact of residential photovoltaic power on electricity sales revenues in Cape Town, South Africa. Utilities Policy. http://www.journals.elsevier.com/utilities-policy/

Further articles and reports can be found on: