Published on Mar 28, 2018
Solar energy is the world’s cheapest and fastest-growing power source, but its rise is in danger of stalling, risking catastrophic climate change. Energy expert Varun Sivaram argues that realizing solar’s potential will require innovation—creative financing, revolutionary technologies, and flexible energy systems. Dr. Sivaram is the Philip D. Reed Fellow for Science and Technology at the Council on Foreign Relations and author of the book, “Taming the Sun: Innovations to Harness Solar Energy and Power the Planet” (MIT Press, 2018), which the Financial Times called “the best available overview of the solar industry and a roadmap for how to achieve that brighter future.” Dr. Sivaram is also a Professor at Georgetown University, where he teaches “Clean Energy Innovation”; an Adjunct Senior Research Scholar at Columbia University; and a board member for the Stanford University energy and environment institutes. He has served as Senior Energy Advisor to the Mayor of Los Angeles and the Governor of New York, and he holds a Ph.D. in condensed matter physics from Oxford University.
Varun Sivaram is the Philip D. Reed fellow for science and technology at the Council on Foreign Relations. He is also an adjunct professor at the Georgetown University School of Foreign Service, a nonresident fellow at the Columbia University Center for Global Energy Policy, and a member of the advisory boards for the Stanford University Woods Institute for the Environment and Precourt Institute for Energy. He is the author of the book Taming the Sun (MIT University Press, 2018). Dr. Sivaram also serves as strategic advisor to the office of New York Governor Andrew Cuomo on Reforming the Energy Vision, and he was formerly a consultant at McKinsey & Company, where he counseled Fortune 500 companies on adapting to the modern competitive landscape in energy. A Truman and a Rhodes scholar, he holds degrees from Stanford University in engineering physics and international relations, with honors in international security. Dr. Sivaram holds a PhD in condensed matter physics from St. John’s College, Oxford University.