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WEBINAR: Place-Based Energy Transition Research

  • June 21, 2023
  • 11:00am–12:20pm ET
  • Online, Eastern Time

Panelists shared takeaways from their place-based research on energy justice and clean energy development, including how such research can inform state and national policy-making. Panelists then reflected on the theoretical frameworks and methodological tools used in their place-based research, as well as the unique and important role of Minority Serving-Institutions (MSIs) in advancing such research. Finally, panelists described their research design strategies for ensuring that their research processes and results serve and benefit the communities they are engaging. The recording is available here.


  • Nadia B. Ahmad is an Associate Professor at Barry University School of Law. Professor Ahmad’s research explores the intersections of energy siting, the environment, and sustainable development and draws on international investment law and corporate social responsibility. Her Sloan Foundation research aims to develop a place-based just energy transition framework by undertaking four community-engaged case studies in Florida, Kansas, Louisiana, and Pennsylvania.
  • Dr. Elise Harrington is an Assistant Professor in the Science, Technology, and Environmental Policy area at the University of Minnesota's Humphrey School of Public Affairs. She studies infrastructure, energy, and environmental policy-making with a focus on how interpersonal relationships and social organization influence the design and implementation of policies, programs, and services in response to climate change mitigation and adaptation activities. Dr. Harrington received her PhD in Environmental Policy and Planning from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 2020.
  • Dr. Conor Harrison joined the Department of Geography and the School of Earth, Ocean and Environment at the University of South Carolina in 2014 after receiving his Ph.D. in geography from the University of North Carolina. His research examines the relationship between energy and society and has focused on questions at the intersection of race, the historical development of electricity supply systems and markets in the American South, the ongoing energy transition in the Caribbean, and the role of finance in reshaping the U.S. electricity system. His Sloan Foundation research involves examining what a just transition means for local communities, labor movements, and energy vulnerable populations in South Carolina and Tennessee.
  • Dr. Bryan Patterson is an Assistant Professor and Chair of the Public Leadership Studies concentration in the Department of  Interdisciplinary Studies at Johnson C. Smith University. Dr. Patterson has taught and developed courses in both the graduate and undergraduate levels with a primary focus on leadership studies and development. His current research interests include individual and organizational leadership, change management, and social entrepreneurship development in nonprofit and community organizations. He is the recipient of an Alfred P. Sloan Foundation grant to examine the systemic barriers facing researchers in Minority Serving Institutions and Historically Black Colleges and Universities across the Southeast in undertaking clean energy research.
  • Dr. Alyse Taylor-Anyikire serves as a Senior Policy Advisor in the Office of Policy at the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE). She focuses on state, local, and tribal engagement as well as advising on clean energy, equity, resilience, and energy cybersecurity. Prior to returning to DOE, Alyse worked with the National Governor’s Association advising Governors’ offices on electricity policy, energy cybersecurity, and energy resilience. Alyse has a doctorate and a master’s degree in electrical engineering from the Georgia Institute of Technology. She also has a bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering from Florida A&M University.
  • Al Huang (moderator) is the Environmental Justice Director at the Institute for Policy Integrity and a lawyer. His work utilizes a model that focuses on providing legal and technical assistance, when invited, to grassroots groups in low-income communities and communities of color facing disproportionate burdens, such as toxic pollution. Prior to coming to IPI, Al directed the environmental justice work and served as a Senior Attorney at Natural Resources Defense Council for 17 years. He has taught environmental justice law and practice as an adjunct professor at Fordham Law School and NYU Law School.

This webinar was the final event in our series highlighting energy equity research funded by the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation.