Season 1 Episode 4: Role of Data Analytics in Supporting Energy Trading Decisions w/ Steve Sinclair

Today, we speak with Steve Sinclair – Head of Data at Flexitricity, a company that created the first demand response portfolio in GB.


In this episode, we covered:

  • The relevance of operational research and optimisation in data science.
  • The gap between academic machine learning and practical decision-making tools.
  • Hiring challenges and the variability of data science talent.
  • The utility of simulations in handling uncertainty and their integration with data.
  • And the disconnect between trending data science skills and industry-specific needs.

The weekly Hypercube podcast sits down with leaders in the energy and utilities sectors to explore how data analytics can help businesses make smarter decisions and accelerate business growth.


[00:56] Jessica gives an overview of Energy Systems Catapult and her role within the organisation.

[2:16] Host Adam asks what stage ESC gets involved with businesses, with Jessica walking through the different businesses they work with and ESC’s role in early-stage research.

[4:19] Jessica emphasises the importance of Open Data and the reasons for this in the energy sector.

[6:18] Jessica talks about how ESC has worked on successful open-source data projects, giving LEAP as an example, which helps local authorities find the most effective route to Net Zero.

[09:33] Jessica speaks about the impact and challenges of open data in the sector.

[14:23] Adam and Jessica discuss the issues around data quality and reliability in the energy space, focusing on compatibility and standardisation.

[17:25] Jessica and Adam talk through the challenges around commercialization using open data.

[19:24] Jessica highlights the different difficulties of accessing both consumer and business energy data.

[24:37] Jessica discusses how data scientists can make use of less granular data effectively.

[26:49] Jessica talks about the lack of diversity in the energy sector and the need to change this to develop solutions for a wider variety of people.

[28:00] Jessica shares her predictions for the industry, including increasing incentives to share data, generative AI, and building data literacy.


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