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New Energy Institute Lecture Series to Provide Platform for Students, Faculty to Interact on Energy Issues

Energy Institute logoIn an effort to provide a multi-disciplinary platform for students and faculty to interact on the most pressing energy issues facing our world, The University of Texas at Austin's Energy Institute has launched the UT Energy Symposium (UT ES). The UT ES will act as a convener for the campus community, serving to unite students interested in energy issues with faculty and others in search of sustainable energy security.

For the fall of 2011, students who register for the symposium will receive one credit hour for the 15-week seminar course, which will be open to both graduate and undergraduate students from all disciplines. Every week an expert from industry, government or academia will talk about key technological, policy, regulatory and market aspects of the week's topics and discuss how issues related to the future of the global energy system. Each talk will be an hour in length with approximately 45 minutes dedicated to the guest lecturer's presentation, followed by 15 mintues of Q&A and discussion.

Varun Rai, assistant professor, LBJ School of Public Affairs, and Research Fellow, CIEEP, is coordinating the UT ES, and will serve as host for the series. “This is a terrific opportunity for students,” Rai said. “Based on the response we received last spring during a handful of lectures, the symposium has great potential to grow into something truly special.”

“Energy is one of those rare, multi-faceted issues that affects each of us, every day of our lives,” Rai added. “We encourage students to take advantage of this opportunity to learn from experts in the field of energy in an informal setting.”

The symposium will begin in the fall on Sept. 1 with Carey King, a Research Fellow from the Center for International Energy and Environmental Policy, a joint research center of the LBJ School of Public Affairs and the Jackson School of Geosciences, for a talk titled "Historical Energy Overview & Why There is No Consensus for the Future."

The following week, Jay Zarnikau, Adjunct Professor at the LBJ School, will discuss "Regulatory Mechanisms to Foster Investments in Energy Efficiency" on Sept. 8.

For a complete list of the schedule fall speakers and more information on the UT ES, visit:

The LBJ School of Public Affairs is one among nine units at the university affiliated with the Energy Insitute. Other units include the School of Architecture, McCombs School of Business, Cockrell School of Engineering, Jackson School of Geosciences, School of Law, College of Liberal Arts, College of Natural Sciences and Texas Advanced Computing Center.