General Resources on
Electricity Restructuring

Last Updated: 20 May 2013

Site maintained by:
Leigh Tesfatsion
Professor of Economics, Mathematics,
   and Electrical and Computer Engineering
Iowa State University
Ames, Iowa 50011-1070
http://www.econ.iastate.edu/tesfatsi/
tesfatsi AT iastate.edu

Power Economics Course (Designed for Distance Ed)
Electricity Market Open-Source Software
Agent-Based Electricity Research
Wholesale Power Market Schematic

Table of Contents

Introduction

The U.S. electric power industry is currently undergoing substantial changes in both its structure (ownership and technology aspects) and its architecture (operational and oversight aspects). These changes involve attempts to move the industry away from highly regulated markets with administered cost-based pricing and towards competitive markets in which prices more fully reflect supply and demand forces. The goal of these changes is to provide industry participants with better incentives to control costs and introduce innovations. The process of enacting and implementing policies and laws to bring about these changes has come to be known as restructuring.

This restructuring process has been controversial. The meltdown in the restructured California wholesale power market in the summer of 2000 has shown what can happen when a complicated market design is implemented without sufficient pre-testing. Following the California crisis, many energy researchers have eloquently argued the need to combine sound physical understanding of electric power and transmission grid operation with economic analysis of incentives in order to develop electricity markets with good real-world performance characteristics.

The goal of this resource site is to encourage the study of restructured electric power markets from a perspective that adequately addresses both economic and engineering concerns. Pertinent introductory lecture notes and readings can be accessed at a course site on Economic Systems for Electric Power Planning designed with long-distance learners in mind. More advanced materials are provided below.

In particular, attention is focused below on new agent-based modeling (ABM) tools designed for the study of complex dynamical systems of interacting entities. ABM testbeds permit the systematic experimental study of restructured electric power markets as collections of strategically interacting traders, market administrators, and regulatory agencies operating through time over realistically rendered AC transmission grids. A more specialized collection of resources related specifically to ABM electricity research is also available.

For each topic area below, authored readings are listed first, followed by pointers to general resource websites for the area (if any). The topic coverage of all of these listings appears to be highly relevant for the study of restructured electricity markets, but not all listings have been carefully checked out at this point. Comments concerning their suitability are most welcome and will be added as annotations to the listings.

Online Resource Sites

Basic Background Materials

The Electricity Industry

Authored Readings:

On-Line Sites Focusing on the Electric Power Industry:

Agent-Based Computational Economics (ACE)

Authored Readings:

ACE-Related Websites:

Auction Mechanisms (Pricing Protocols)

Authored Readings:

Game Theory (Pricing and Trading Strategies)

Authored Readings:

Websites on Game Theory:

Learning and the Evolution of Behavioral Rules

Authored Readings:

Websites:

Network Economics

Websites:

Software Resources

Case Study Resources


U.S. RESTRUCTURED WHOLESALE ELECTRIC POWER MARKETS:


GENERAL REGULATORY POLICY:


CASE STUDIES: GENERAL INFORMATION SOURCES


AUSTRALIA:


CALIFORNIA, U.S.A.:

Authored Readings:

Websites on the California Electric Power Industry:


MIDWEST, U.S.A.


NEW ENGLAND, U.S.A.:


NEW YORK, U.S.A.:


NEW ZEALAND:

Authored Readings:


PENNSYLVANIA-NEW JERSEY-MARYLAND, U.S.A.:


Southwest, U.S.A. (SPP):


SPAIN:

Authored Readings:


TEXAS, U.S.A.:


UNITED KINGDOM:

Authored Readings:

Websites on the United Kingdom Electricity Industry:


OTHER CASE STUDY RESOURCES

Online Resources:

Introductory Materials on the Smart Grid

Acknowledgments:

The initial development of this website in 1999 was funded in part by the National Science Foundation under a contract titled "Decision Models for Bulk Energy Transportation Networks." Subsequent development has been funded in part by Electric Power Research Center (EPRC) research grants, by the Los Alamos National Laboratory under a consultancy agreement, and by the Electric Power Research Institute and the Department of Defense through a contract titled "Innovative Technologies for Defense Against Catastrophic Failures of Complex Interactive Power Networks," a cooperative effort by Iowa State University, the University of Washington, Arizona State University, and Virginia Polytechnic and State University under a Joint Initiative on the Analysis of Complex Dynamical Systems.

Copyright © 2013 Leigh Tesfatsion. All Rights Reserved.