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Venkatesh

Venkatesh "Venky" Narayanamurti

Benjamin Peirce Research Professor of Technology and Public Policy, Science, Technology, and Pubic Policy Program

Member of the Board, Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs

Contact:
Telephone: 617-495-1464
Email: venky@seas.harvard.edu

 

 

By Program/Project

 

Environment and Natural Resources (continued)

Babcock & Wilcox Photo

December 2010

Tranforming the Energy Economy: Options for Accelerating the Commercialization of Advanced Energy Technologies—Framing Statement

Report

By Laura Diaz Anadon, Associate, Environment and Natural Resources Program, Erik Mielke, Former Research Fellow, Energy Technology Innovation Policy research group, 2010–2011, Henry Lee, Director, Environment and Natural Resources Program, Matthew Bunn, Professor of Practice; Co-Principal Investigator, Project on Managing the Atom and Venkatesh "Venky" Narayanamurti, Benjamin Peirce Research Professor of Technology and Public Policy, Science, Technology, and Pubic Policy Program

"There is broad political consensus that the current energy system in the United States is unable to meet the nation's future energy needs, from the security, environment, and economic perspectives. New energy technologies are required to increase the availability of domestic energy supplies, to reduce the negative environmental impacts of our energy system, to improve the reliability of current energy infrastructure (e.g., smart grid, energy storage), and to increase energy efficiency throughout the economy."

 

 

AP Photo

October 2010

"Water Consumption of Energy Resource Extraction, Processing, and Conversion"

Discussion Paper

By Erik Mielke, Former Research Fellow, Energy Technology Innovation Policy research group, 2010–2011, 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

This paper provides an overview of water consumption for different sources of energy, including extraction, processing, and conversion of resources, fuels, and technologies. The primary focus of this paper is to summarize the consumptive use of water for different sources of energy. Where appropriate, levels of water withdrawals are also discussed, especially in the context of cooling of thermoelectric power plants.

 

 

April 2010

DOE FY 2011 Budget Request for Energy Research, Development, Demonstration, and Deployment: Analysis and Recommendations

Report

By Laura Diaz Anadon, Associate, Environment and Natural Resources Program, Matthew Bunn, Professor of Practice; Co-Principal Investigator, Project on Managing the Atom, Gabe Chan, Former Research Fellow, Energy Technology Innovation Policy research group, 2012–2015, Melissa Chan, Former Research Fellow, Energy Research, Development, Demonstration & Deployment Policy Project, Energy Technology Innovation Policy research group, January 2009–December 2010, Kelly Sims Gallagher, Member of the Board, Charles Jones, Former Associate, Energy Technology Innovation Policy research group, 2011–2013; Former Research Fellow, Energy Technology Innovation Policy research group, 2008–2010, Ruud Kempener, Former Research Fellow, Energy Technology Innovation Policy research group, 2009–2011, Audrey Lee, Former Research Fellow, Energy Technology Innovation Policy research group, 2009–2011 and Venkatesh "Venky" Narayanamurti, Benjamin Peirce Research Professor of Technology and Public Policy, Science, Technology, and Pubic Policy Program

This analysis provides an overview the Department of Energy's fiscal year 2011 energy research, development, demonstration, and deployment (ERD3) budget proposals, and lays out actionable recommendations to strengthen the effort.  Overall, the report concludes that the 7 percent requested increase in applied energy research, development, and demonstration funds, while welcome in a time of budget stringency, remains well short of the sustained investment likely to be needed to meet the energy demands of the 21st century.

 

 

Courtesy of DOE/NREL

January 14, 2010

"U.S. Public Energy Innovation Institutions and Mechanisms: Status & Deficiencies"

Policy Memo

By Laura Diaz Anadon, Associate, Environment and Natural Resources Program, Matthew Bunn, Professor of Practice; Co-Principal Investigator, Project on Managing the Atom, Charles Jones, Former Associate, Energy Technology Innovation Policy research group, 2011–2013; Former Research Fellow, Energy Technology Innovation Policy research group, 2008–2010 and Venkatesh "Venky" Narayanamurti, Benjamin Peirce Research Professor of Technology and Public Policy, Science, Technology, and Pubic Policy Program

The United States needs to transform the way it produces and uses energy. This will require the improvement of current technologies and the development of new ones. To achieve the maximum payoff for public investments in energy technology innovation, the United States will need to improve and better align the management and structure of existing and new energy innovation institutions, and better connect R&D to demonstration and deployment. In this policy memo, the authors discuss three general and important recommendations for thinking about different initiatives, and we discuss the merits and challenges of current and new institutions, and the remaining gaps in the U.S. energy innovation system.

 

 

AP Photo

September 2009

"Institutions for Energy Innovation: A Transformational Challenge"

Paper

By Venkatesh "Venky" Narayanamurti, Benjamin Peirce Research Professor of Technology and Public Policy, Science, Technology, and Pubic Policy Program, Laura Diaz Anadon, Associate, Environment and Natural Resources Program and Ambuj D. Sagar, Visiting Scholar, Science, Technology, and Public Policy Program

"The technology-led transformation of the U.S. energy system that the administration is seeking is unlikely to succeed without a transformation of energy innovation institutions and of the way in which policymakers think about their design, according to scholars with the Belfer Center's Energy Technology Innovation Policy research group. They set out principles for a much-needed conversation among analysts, managers, scientists, and policymakers on how to enhance the effectiveness of these institutions."

 

 

AP Photo

Fall 2009

"Transforming Energy Innovation"

Journal Article, Issues in Science and Technology

By Venkatesh "Venky" Narayanamurti, Benjamin Peirce Research Professor of Technology and Public Policy, Science, Technology, and Pubic Policy Program, Laura Diaz Anadon, Associate, Environment and Natural Resources Program and Ambuj D. Sagar, Visiting Scholar, Science, Technology, and Public Policy Program

"The United States must change the way it produces and uses energy by shifting away from its dependence on imported oil and coal-fired electricity and by increasing the efficiency with which energy is extracted, captured, converted, and used if it is to meet the urgent challenges facing the energy system, of which climate change and energy security are the most pressing. This will require the improvement of current technologies and the development of new transformative ones, particularly if the transition to a new energy system is going to be timely and cost-effective."

 

Science, Technology, and Public Policy

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."

 

 

October 2016

Cycles of Invention and Discovery: Rethinking the Endless Frontier

Book

By Venkatesh "Venky" Narayanamurti, Benjamin Peirce Research Professor of Technology and Public Policy, Science, Technology, and Pubic Policy Program and Tolu Odumosu, Associate, Science, Technology, and Public Policy Program

Cycles of Invention and Discovery offers an in-depth look at the real-world practice of science and engineering. It shows how the standard categories of "basic" and "applied" have become a hindrance to the organization of the U.S. science and technology enterprise. Tracing the history of these problematic categories, the authors document how historical views of policy makers and scientists have led to the construction of science as a pure ideal on the one hand and of engineering as a practical (and inherently less prestigious) activity on the other. Even today, this erroneous but still widespread distinction forces these two endeavors into separate silos, misdirects billions of dollars, and thwarts progress in science and engineering research.

 

 

Sandia Labs/DOE

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.

 
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.