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Laura Diaz Anadon

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Laura Diaz Anadon

Associate, Environment and Natural Resources Program

Contact:
Email: laura_diaz_anadon@harvard.edu

 

Experience

Former Director, Energy Technology Innovation Policy Research Group (2010-2016); Former Associate Director, Science, Technology, and Public Policy Program (2012-2016)

Dr. Laura Diaz Anadon is University Lecturer (Assistant Professor) at the Department of Politics and International Studies at the University of Cambridge. She is also a Bye Fellow in Peterhouse, an associate researcher of the Energy Policy Research Group at Cambridge, a Fellow at C-EENRG, and an Associate at the Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs at the Harvard Kennedy School (HKS) at Harvard University.

Dr. Anadon joined the University of Cambridge in September 2016 from the Harvard Kennedy School, where she was an Assistant Professor of Public Policy since July 2013. Before that, she held various posts also at HKS including Associate Director of the Science, Technology and Public Policy (STPP) program, Co-Principal Investigator of the Energy Technology Innovation Policy research group, Member of the Board of the Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs, co-Director of the Project of Innovation and Access to Technologies for Sustainable Development, and Faculty Affiliate of the Harvard Center for the Environment and the Weatherhead Center for International Affairs. In 2015–2016, she was a Visiting Senior Lecturer in Science, Technology Innovation and Public Policy at University College London. At HKS Anadon also developed and taught courses on Energy Innovation Policy and a core MPP course on Policy Analysis.

Anadon has engaged with policymakers in the United States, China, South Korea, the United Kingdom, Spain, and Mexico, among other countries, and contributed to the UN Global Sustainable Development report and the Global Energy Assessment. She was on the advisory board of the project on "Accelerating Energy Innovation" at the International Energy Agency and has worked as a consultant for various organizations (i.e., Climate Strategies on a World Bank project, UNFCCC, and OECD).

Anadon holds a Ph.D. in Chemical Engineering from the Magnetic Resonance and Catalysis Group at the University of Cambridge, a Masters in Public Policy from the Harvard Kennedy School, and a Masters in Chemical Engineering from the University of Manchester. She has also studied and worked on research at the University of Stuttgart, where she conducted her Diplomarbeit (masters thesis). She also carried out process engineering research projects at DuPont and Bayer Pharmaceuticals, collaborated extensively with Johnson Matthey Catalysts, and worked as a financial consultant at Oliver Wyman for banks on credit risk models for financing technology projects.

 

 

By Date

 

2016

November 2016

"Scientific Wealth in Middle East and North Africa: Productivity, Indigeneity, and Specialty in 1981–2013"

Journal Article, PLoS ONE, issue 11, volume 11

By Afreen Siddiqi, Visiting Scholar, Science, Technology, and Public Policy Program, Jonathan Stoppani, Laura Diaz Anadon, Associate, Environment and Natural Resources Program and Venkatesh "Venky" Narayanamurti, Benjamin Peirce Research Professor of Technology and Public Policy, Science, Technology, and Pubic Policy Program

Several developing countries seek to build knowledge-based economies by attempting to expand scientific research capabilities. Characterizing the state and direction of progress in this arena is challenging but important. In this article, the authors employ three metrics: a classical metric of productivity (publications per person), an adapted metric which we denote as Revealed Scientific Advantage (developed from work used to compare publications in scientific fields among countries) to characterize disciplinary specialty, and a new metric, scientific indigeneity (defined as the ratio of publications with domestic corresponding authors) to characterize the locus of scientific activity that also serves as a partial proxy for local absorptive capacity.

 

 

October 25, 2016

"How to Fix the National Laboratories"

Op-Ed, The National Interest

By Laura Diaz Anadon, Associate, Environment and Natural Resources Program, Gabe Chan, Former Research Fellow, Energy Technology Innovation Policy research group, 2012–2015, Amitai Bin-Nun, Former Associate, Science, Technology, and Public Policy Program, 2014–2016 and Venkatesh "Venky" Narayanamurti, Benjamin Peirce Research Professor of Technology and Public Policy, Science, Technology, and Pubic Policy Program

"The Department of Energy's (DOE's) National Laboratories are a core engine of the U.S. national innovation system but one in urgent need of a tune-up if the United States is to meet the pressing challenges of energy security and climate change mitigation. The next administration and Congress must modernize the policy framework shaping the National Labs to allow them to more effectively drive the innovation necessary to meet energy policy priorities."

 

 

Sandia Labs/DOE

September 13, 2016

"The Pressing Energy Innovation Challenge of the US National Laboratories"

Journal Article, Nature Energy, volume 1

By Laura Diaz Anadon, Associate, Environment and Natural Resources Program, Gabe Chan, Former Research Fellow, Energy Technology Innovation Policy research group, 2012–2015, Amitai Bin-Nun, Former Associate, Science, Technology, and Public Policy Program, 2014–2016 and Venkatesh "Venky" Narayanamurti, Benjamin Peirce Research Professor of Technology and Public Policy, Science, Technology, and Pubic Policy Program

Accelerating the development and deployment of energy technologies is a pressing challenge. Doing so will require policy reform that improves the efficacy of public research organizations and strengthens the links between public and private innovators. With their US$14 billion annual budget and unique mandates, the US National Laboratories have the potential to critically advance energy innovation, yet reviews of their performance find several areas of weak organizational design. This article discusses the challenges the National Laboratories face in engaging the private sector, increasing their contributions to transformative research, and developing culture and management practices to better support innovation. The authors also offer recommendations for how policymakers can address these challenges.

 

 

August 12, 2016

"Making Technological Innovation Work for Sustainable Development"

Journal Article, Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America

By Laura Diaz Anadon, Associate, Environment and Natural Resources Program, Gabe Chan, Former Research Fellow, Energy Technology Innovation Policy research group, 2012–2015, Alicia Harley, Kira Matus, Suerie Moon, Sharmila L. Murthy and William C. Clark, Harvey Brooks Professor of International Science, Public Policy, and Human Development; Co-director, Sustainability Science Program; Faculty Chair, ENRP

This article sets forth the authors' perspective on how technological innovation can better advance the goals of sustainable development. The authors seek to help bridge the gap between scholarship and practice by drawing from conceptual research, empirical cases, and real-world experience to highlight practical guidelines for use by practicing scientists, engineers, entrepreneurs, and policy advocates.

 

 

Dennis Schroeder

2016

"Quantifying the Effects of Expert Selection and Elicitation Design on Experts' Confidence in Their Judgments About Future Energy Technologies"

Journal Article, Risk Analysis

By Gregory Nemet, Former Visiting Scholar, Science, Technology, and Public Policy Program/Energy Technology Innovation Policy research group, January–June 2011, Laura Diaz Anadon, Associate, Environment and Natural Resources Program and Elena Verdolini

Expert elicitations are now frequently used to characterize uncertain future technology outcomes. However, their usefulness is limited, in part because: estimates across studies are not easily comparable; choices in survey design and expert selection may bias results; and overconfidence is a persistent problem. The authors provide quantitative evidence of how these choices affect experts' estimates.

 

 

Creative Commons

May 24, 2016

"Formulating Expectations for Future Water Availability through Infrastructure Development Decisions in Arid Regions"

Journal Article, Systems Engineering

By Afreen Siddiqi, Visiting Scholar, Science, Technology, and Public Policy Program, Farah Ereiqat and Laura Diaz Anadon, Associate, Environment and Natural Resources Program

In this research paper, the authors propose that future human mediated water availability in arid regions may be assessed by considering key projects that have been identified or proposed by regional experts and organizations. Using Multicriteria Decision Methods as a framework to organize a set of decision criteria and their relative salience, the likelihood of selection (and development) of a project can be determined and used to form expectations of future regional water availability. The authors apply this approach in a case study of Jordan.

 

 

April 2016

"Increasing Residential Building Energy Efficiency In China: An Evaluation of Policy Instruments"

Discussion Paper

By Xiaoqi Xu, Former Giorgio Ruffolo Postdoctoral Research Fellow, Sustainability Science Program/Energy Technology Innovation Policy research group, 2013–2014, Laura Diaz Anadon, Associate, Environment and Natural Resources Program and Henry Lee, Director, Environment and Natural Resources Program

Various policies targeting at building energy efficiency have been promulgated by the Chinese government in the past decade. However, few studies evaluate if China is on the right path to meet its energy goals through these policies by providing an assessment of their effect in reducing energy consumption in residential buildings or the feasibility of such policies to catalyze these reductions. This paper attempts to fill this gap by systematically quantifying (1) the energy savings catalyzed by existing policy instruments; (2) the additional energy savings that could be realized by strengthening these policies; and (3) the relative advantages of each policy.

 

 

March 2016

DOE Budget Authority for Energy Research, Development, & Demonstration Database

Fact Sheet

By Kelly Sims Gallagher, Member of the Board and Laura Diaz Anadon, Associate, Environment and Natural Resources Program

This document contains March 2016 updates to our database on U.S. government investments in energy research, development, demonstration, and deployment (ERD3) through the Department of Energy. The database, in Microsoft Excel format, tracks DOE appropriations from FY 1978–2016 and the 2017 budget request and includes funding for ERD3 from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009. It also includes several charts.

 

 

June 2016

"Expert Views — and Disagreements — About the Potential of Energy Technology R&D"

Journal Article, Climatic Change, issue 3, volume 136

By Laura Diaz Anadon, Associate, Environment and Natural Resources Program, Erin Baker, Valentina Bosetti and Lara Aleluia Reis

In order to make R&D funding decisions to meet particular goals, such as mitigating climate change or improving energy security, or to estimate the social returns to R&D, policy makers need to combine the information provided in this study on cost reduction potentials with an analysis of the macroeconomic implications of these technological changes. The authors conclude with recommendations for future directions on energy expert elicitations.

 

 

July 2016

"Balancing Solar PV Deployment and RD&D: A Comprehensive Framework for Managing Innovation Uncertainty in Electricity Technology Investment Planning"

Journal Article, Renewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews, volume 60

By Nidhi R. Santen, Former Associate, Energy Technology Innovation Policy research group (ETIP), January 16–30, 2015; Former Project Manager, ETIP, July 2014–January 16, 2015; Former Fellow, ETIP, 2012–2014 and Laura Diaz Anadon, Associate, Environment and Natural Resources Program

This article shows that it is possible to unify several realistic features of the deployment and development problem for the electricity sector to meet sustainability goals into one framework.

 
Events Calendar

We host a busy schedule of events throughout the fall, winter and spring. Past guests include: UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, former Vice President Al Gore, and former Soviet Union President Mikhail Gorbachev.