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Michael is a postdoctoral fellow whose interests encompass international development projects requiring productive energy use and how to increase their success through transdisciplinary approaches. He has a dual appointment in the Precourt Institute for Energy and the Department of Energy Resources Engineering. His current work focuses on understanding and reducing produce supply chain inefficiency in India from a systems perspective, while identifying and testing scalable interventions with on-the-ground partners and end-users. Michael completed a PhD in Materials Science and Engineering as an NSF Graduate Research Fellow at Stanford. His thesis focused on using fundamental research to develop design descriptors for improving solar-to-fuel and fuel-to-electricity conversion using electrochemistry.
Michael’s interest in social and environmental impact work began in high school as the president of the region’s youth-led tobacco free coalition. The coalition was runner-up for National Youth Advocates of the Year given by the Campaign for Tobacco Free Kids when Idaho (his home state) went tobacco-free. At Kenyon College, he self-designed a major in Chemical Physics to understand how related disciplines approach challenges in renewable energy technology development while co-captaining the men’s NCAA National Champion swim team.
After graduating in 2009, Michael moved to Germany as a Transatlantic Renewable Energy Fellow to research low-cost solar cells while learning about the sociopolitical environment that placed Germany as a global leader in renewable energy integration. While there, he attended the UNFCCC COP15 climate summit with two other fellows. Leading up to and during the highly anticipated event, they wrote and published an educational blog for the public. After leaving Germany, Michael lived in Southeast Asia as a Henry Luce Scholar to gain first-hand experience with renewable energy integration in unelectrified regions of Laos and Cambodia. This experience informed his desire to continue work on energy inequality and development around the world.