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Stanford Energy Ventures

About the course

Stanford Energy Ventures is a unique project-based energy innovation course that provides Stanford students with a platform to envision, develop and create high-impact new clean energy ventures. Students develop the skill sets that will enable them to be effective global clean energy innovation leaders. Stanford Energy Ventures is the only course on campus focusing completely on energy and climate entrepreneurship.

How do we create and successfully scale the hundreds of energy ventures required to address the global energy challenge? The course will teach you how to identify, build and scale new high-impact ventures in energy through a combination of curriculum- and project-based work. You will have access to engaging lectures on the ins-and-outs of business strategy, guest lectures from successful entrepreneurs and one-on-one mentorship with an experienced teaching team.

Check out this article about the class in the Stanford Energy Journal by David McColl!

Join us!

  • If you are interested in taking the class, but do not have a team, please fill out this form. No formal application is required.
  • If you are interested in leading your own project, please apply here, and then email teaching assistant Daniel Sambor (dsambor@stanford.edu) to set up a meeting with the teaching team. The deadline to apply as a project team leader for the spring quarter was March 7, 2020. 

We need students to connect and form teams before the quarter starts. If you do not have a team please contact the team leaders. Here are a few tools you can use to find team/teammates:

  1. Potential projects and team leaders will be listed here one to two weeks before classes start.
  2. Feel free to use the Team Formation HUB at the GSB to connect with other students interested in taking the class. 
  3. If you need more teammates, please contact the TA (info below) for networking with interested students.

  We hope to have threee to five teams of four to six persons each by the end of the first week. 

Teaching Team

Stanford Energy Ventures is led by three Precourt Energy Scholars with decades of energy technology, business, and policy expertise:

  • David Danielson: managing director of Breakthrough Energy Ventures, former assistant secretary of energy efficiency and renewable energy at the U.S. Department of Energy (david.danielson@stanford.edu)
  • Stuart Macmillan: former chief scientist at the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (smacmillan@stanford.edu)
  • Joel Moxley: founder of Foro Energy and Rho AI; founding investor at Zero Mass Water, Rubicon Global, and Pie Insurance (jfmoxley@stanford.edu)

They will lead interdisciplinary teams who research, analyze and develop detailed launch plans for high-impact ventures in the context of a new energy development framework offered in this course. Teams will present their analysis and findings to a panel of industry leaders at the end of the quarter. This course will include a combination of lectures by the course instructors and outside energy leaders, in addition to extensive hands-on support to project teams from course instructors and staff. Past panel judges include Jagdeep Singh (QuantumScape), Cathy Zoi (Odyssey Energy), Ben Tarbell (X), Marianne Wu (GE), Shally Shanker (Schmidt Family Foundation),  Brook Porter (Kleiner Perkins), and Arun Majumdar.

Course Structure

Stanford Energy Ventures is a team-based course where students learn how to bring their promising new ideas in energy and climate technology to market. Students will either form teams outside the class before the quarter begins, or the teaching team will help match students who want to take the course with existing teams. In order to ensure that teams have the best experience in the course, the teaching team must approve all teams, (typically an in-person meeting with the teaching team), before team members enroll. Click here to access the course overview slides presented at the 2018 Energy@Stanford&SLAC conference.

Student Austin Sendek pitches his venture to guest speaker Vinod Khosla, Managing Partner of Khosla Ventures, while Prof. Joel Moxley looks on (Fall 2017).

2019-20 ENERGY203 Course Details

Offered every autumn, winter and spring quarter. Meets Wednesdays, 2:30-4:20. See Stanford Explore Courses for room information. 

If you have additional questions please contact course teach assistant Dan Sambor (dsambor@stanford.edu).