EMC Working Papers

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Editorial Committee
Editorial Committee
Dr Patrick GOUGEON
Director, EMC
Emeritus Professor, ESCP Business School, France

Editorial Assistant
Director, EMC
Assistant Professor, ESCP Business School, UK

E: gmakridou@escp.eu
T: +44 (0)20 7443 8971

The Energy Management Centre periodically publishes working papers involving research by the members of the Laboratory and joint projects with external researchers.

The Working Paper Series provides researchers with the opportunity to make the results of new and continuing work available in a timely fashion. Many of the working papers are draft stages of articles that will eventually be published in international scientific journals. 

Search Results

Covid-19 and the global oil market: Analysis and forecast for the oil industry

In the first quarter of 2020, the oil market was as turbulent as a hurricane hurting the US Gulf Coast. The dramatic collapse of oil demand pushed oil prices to new territories. The situation sets a gloomy future for weaker oil producers in the upstream sector. This led to a fragile coalition between crude oil producing countries.


Read more ...

Edouard Lotz,
MEM Student, ESCP Business School
Fuel Poverty: a distinct problem? Interesting… but possibly misleading

A pressing issue for policy makers

Availability and affordability of energy have become pressing issues. Particularly in the poorest areas on the planet where energy infrastructures is still insufficiently developed, but in more mature countries as well, where the less favoured have too often no choice but to accept poor housing conditions characterised by low energy efficiency and hence expensive energy bills. Today, access to affordable energy is considered to be a basic human right and as such a key goal for policy makers. In this context the concept of “fuel poverty” has emerged. Robinson et al. (2018)1 define fuel poverty as « an inability to attain the socially and materially necessitated domestic energy services that ensure the wellbeing of a household, allowing them to participate meaningfully in society ». This view is aligned with the general definition of poverty and social exclusion2. Of course, a large number of academic studies, surveys and reports addressing this specific theme have been produced. Their aim is first to reveal the growing importance of this problem and its related potential severe consequences, then to identify the mechanisms involved in the rise of this form of poverty and to imagine indicators to identify the population at risk. The ultimate goal is of course to propose guidance for corrective actions.


A relevant approach? 

Download the paper to read more ...

Dr Patrick Gougeon,
Director, EMC Emeritus Professor, ESCP Business School, France
Is the United States Really the World’s Top Crude Oil Producer or is this a Figment of BP’s Imagination?

The BP Statistical Review of World Energy, the International Energy Agency (IEA) and the Financial Times are three of a kind. The three of them represent the major consumers of oil (particularly western consumers) and, therefore, have a tendency to exaggerate global oil reserves, production and 

Dr Mamdouh G. Salameh,
International Oil Economist
Has the Petrodollar Had Its Day?

The petrodollar came into existence in 1973 in the wake of the collapse of the international gold standard which was created in the aftermath of World War II under the Bretton Woods agreements. These agreements also established the US dollar as the reserve currency of the world. The Nixon Administration understood that the collapse of the gold standard system would cause a decline in the global demand for the US dollar.  Maintaining demand for the US dollar was vital for the United States’ economy. So the United States under Nixon struck a deal in 1973 with Saudi Arabia. Under the terms of the deal, the Saudis would agree to price all of their oil exports in US dollars exclusively and be open to investing their surplus oil proceeds in US debt securities. In return, the United States offered weapons and protection of Saudi oilfields from neighbouring countries including Israel. For the Americans, the petrodollar increases demand for the dollar and also for US debt securities and allows the US to buy oil with a currency it can print at will. In 1975, all of the OPEC nations agreed to follow suit. Maintaining the petrodollar is America’s primary goal. Everything else is secondary. This paper will deal with the actions, incentives, and related consequences that the United States has created through its attempts to maintain global hegemony through the petrodollar. It will examine the latest challenges facing the petrodollar and how the petrodollar system influences the United States’ foreign policy. The paper will conclude that the petrodollar has had its day and that it will be a matter of time before it becomes redundant with huge repercussions for the US economy and the global economy. 

Dr Mamdouh G. Salameh,
International Oil Economist
Impact of US Shale Oil Revolution on the Global Oil Market, the Price of Oil & Peak Oil

Reports about the US shale oil boom being a game changer have proliferated after the November 2012's prediction by the Paris-based International Energy Agency (IEA) that the United States will overtake Saudi Arabia and Russia to become the world's biggest oil producer by 2020 and energy self-sufficient by 2030. While such rosy predictions play well to the IEA's audience, which is largely American, they don't stand up to scrutiny. Still, it is clear that US shale resources might at some point play some role in non-OPEC supply prospects.

The paper will argue that US shale oil production would hardly make a dent in the global oil supplies as it would largely offset the decline in US conventional oil production. It will also argue that the US would never be able to overtake Saudi Arabia or Russia in oil production and would continue to be dependent on oil imports for the foreseeable future. The paper will conclude that the shale oil boom in the United States would not be easy to replicate in the rest of the world nor would it invalidate the peak oil concept.

Dr Mamdouh G. Salameh,
International Oil Economist
Risk Assessment for the Shale Gas industry in Europe

This article presents the main conclusions of a survey carried out as part of a research project on "risk management in the energy industry" sponsored by KPMG/ESCP Europe Chair Risk Strategy and Performance.


The success of shale gas in the US has prompted companies to examine the possibilities of replicating the shale gas production and market in Europe. But in doing so they face various difficulties including issues such as the different geology, the density of European population, the legal, fiscal and land-use particularities and the service industry for onshore. To add to the difficulties, there is considerable environmental skepticism and opposition from lobby groups and media regarding shale gas drilling in Europe. Hence, a comprehensive assessment of risks of shale gas development in Europe is helpful to prevent harms as well as to take into consideration investment and growth opportunities. In this paper we outline six major clusters of risks associated with developing the shale gas industry in Europe: social, environmental, economic, regulatory, geopolitical, and technological. The outcome of this paper is extremely useful to companies' leaders willing to invest in shale gas in some European countries. This dimension of contemplating the risks associated with shale gas development, from the companies' point of view, has received less attention so far and provides opportunities for further research, particularly from management scholars.

Index Terms-- Shale gas, energy security, energy policy, energy market.

Lucie Roux,
Senior European Gas Specialist Platts
James B. Seaton Iii,
Executive, Oil & Gas/ Energy Houston Technology Center
Dr Kostas Andriosopoulos,
Fmr. Associate Professor, ESCP Business School, UK
Dr Patrick Gougeon,
Director, EMC Emeritus Professor, ESCP Business School, France
China: The Ultimate Decider on Crude Oil Prices

The single most important driver of shifting dynamics in world oil markets is China. It alone will continue to account for most of the world demand growth throughout this decade and probably the next. In September 2013, China's net oil imports are projected to exceed those of the United States on a monthly basis and by 2014 on an annual basis, making it the largest importer of oil in the world. In order to satisfy its thirst for oil, China has aggressively used its financial reserves to offer billions in development credit, underwritten with oil, especially in Africa, Latin America, and even Russia. From energy security point of view, one of the biggest threats to maintaining a stable oil price in the long run will be satisfying growth in Chinese demand. That is what is putting pressure on prices. An optimistic oil price could range from $100 to $130 a barrel. However, this paper will argue that in a supply-constrained world and with OPEC's spare capacity continuing to shrink, oil is unlikely to spend much time hovering around that price range. It will suggest that prices will continue to spike over the next five years occasionally reaching $200/barrel in order to keep oil demand in check. The paper will also argue that the global economy can at most sustain oil prices that represent just about 6% of GDP translating into $137 a barrel of Brent crude by 2015, $156 by 2020, and $241 by 2035. It will conclude that China's steep-rising oil demand, its search for new sources of oil and also its acquiring of oil assets around the world will ultimately give it the final say on the oil price globally.

Key Words: China, price, growth, energy security, superpower. 

Dr Mamdouh G. Salameh,
International Oil Economist
If Current Trends Continue, Saudi Arabia Could Become an Oil Importer by 2025

The flame of oil is not eternal. The horizon carries all signs of peak oil.Saudi Arabia, the world's biggest crude oil producer and exporter risks becoming an oil importer probably by 2025 if current economic, demographic and security trends continue into the future. Saudi oil production peaked in 2005 and has been in steady decline since then with domestic oil demand rising at an alarming rate and accounting for 37% of crude production in 2012. As a result, Saudi crude exports have already declined by 32% between 2005 and 2012 and are projected to decline further by 9% by 2015. Population growth and robust economic development and also fuel subsidies drive that demand.

By 2025 Saudi oil consumption is projected to exceed production by 610,000 barrels a day (b/d) and Saudi Arabia would have ceased, to all intents and purposes, to remain a net oil exporter. This paper will argue forcefully that even a drastic cut, if not elimination, of subsidies altogether and a determined shift from oil use in power generation and desalination to nuclear and renewable energy sources starting immediately will not delay the inevitable day when Saudi Arabia will become a net oil importer. The paper will also assess the implications of this eventuality for the global economy, energy security and the price of oil

Dr Mamdouh G. Salameh,
International Oil Economist
Risk management in the energy markets and value at risk modelling: a hybrid approach

This paper proposes a set of VaR models appropriate to capture the dynamics of energy prices and subsequently quantify energy price risk by calculating VaR and ES measures. Amongst the competing VaR methodologies evaluated in this paper, besides the commonly used benchmark models, a MC simulation approach and a Hybrid MC with Historical Simulation approach, both assuming various processes for the underlying spot prices, are also being employed. All VaR models are empirically tested on eight spot energy commodities that trade futures contracts on NYMEX and the Spot Energy Index. A two-stage evaluation and selection process is applied, combining statistical and economicmeasures, to choose amongst the competing VaR models. Finally, both long and short trading positions are considered as it is extremely important for energy traders and risk managers to be able to capture efficiently the characteristics of both tails of the distributions.

Dr Kostas Andriosopoulos,
Fmr. Associate Professor, ESCP Business School, UK
Dr Nikos Nomikos,
Director, MSc in Shipping, Trade and Finance Professor, Cass Business School, City University London, UK
Oil Scenarios for Long-Term Planning: Royal Dutch Shell and Generative Explanation, 1960-2010

Most executives know that overarching paints of plausible futures will profoundly affect the competitiveness and survival of their organisation. Initially from the perspective of Shell, this article discuses oil scenarios and their relevance for upstream investments. Scenarios are then incorporated into generative explanation and its principal instrument, namely agent-based computational laboratories, as the new standard of explanation of the past and the present and the new way to structure the uncertainties of the future. The key concept is that the future should not be regarded as 'complicated' but as 'complex', in that there are uncertainties about the driving forces that generate unanticipated futures, which cannot be explored analytically. 

Voudouris V.
Prof. Michael Jefferson,
Member, International Advisory Board, Energy Policy journal Affiliate Professor, ESCP Business School, UK
The ACEGES 1.0 Documentation: Simulated Scenarios of Conventional Oil Production

The ACEGES (Agent-based Computational Economics of the Global Energy System) 1.0 model is an agent-based model of conventional oil production for 93 countries. The model accounts for four key uncertainties, namely Estimated Ultimate Recovery (EUR), estimated growth in oil demand, estimated growth in oil production and assumed peak/decline point. This documentation provides an overview of the ACEGES model capabilities and an example of how it can be used for long-term (discrete and continuous) scenarios of conventional oil production.


Oil production, ACEGES, agent-based model, energy scenarios, oil forecasting

Voudouris V.
Di Maio C.

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