Student Competitions & Mentoring Session

Best Student Paper Award

Case Competition

Poster Competition

Student Mentoring Session



 Dennis J. O'Brien Best Student Paper Award

 Winner of the Competition:

Yang Yu

Stanford University

"Wind Power Producers' Costs and Associated Market Regulations: The Source of Wind Power Producers' Market Power" 


[from left] Sarah Le Tang, Michael Redinger, Hamid Aghale, Yang Yu, and Prof. Thomas Drennen , VP of Academic Affairs for USAEE.


The Best Student Paper Award Program was open to full-time student members of USAEE/IAEE who have not previously won a prize at an IAEE affiliated conference. The paper must be original work completed by the student.  Papers may be co-authored by fellow students, however, co-authorship by a faculty member or non-student is not permitted. The application process was otherwise the same as for presentations during the general concurrent sessions of the conference. The submitted papers were reviewed by a group of judges who selected four for competitive presentation during a special session at the 2015 USAEE North American Conference in Pittsburgh. A top prize of $1000 was awarded to the best paper in energy economics and prizes of $500 were given to each of the three runners-up.



 Hamid Aghale

Austrian Institute of Technology

"Optimal Investments in Energy-only Markets"


Michael Redinger

Colorado School of Mines

"Drilling Down the Bakken Learning Curve"


Sarah Le Tang

Brandeis University

"Energy Prices and Investment in Energy Efficiency: Evidence from Chinese Industry 1997-2004"



Thomas Drennen, Hobart and William Smith Colleges and Sandia National Labs and V.P. of Academic Affairs for the USAEE

Peter Kobos, Sandia National Labs and V.P.,Chapter Liaison for USAEE

Sanya Carley, School of Public Env. Affairs at Indiana University and Secretary Treasurer of the USAEE

Eric Hittinger, Rochester Institute of Technology and Council Member

Seth Blumsack, Pennylvania State University

Paulina Jaramillo, Carnegie Mellon University


  Mr. Yang Yu's paper, along with Abstracts for the papers presented by each of the finalists may be found on the Conference Web-site under the heading, "Program - Concurrent Sesions" for Session 6, at http://www.usaee.org/usaee2015/program_concurrent.aspx. 




4th Annual Case Competition

 Winner of the Competition:

Carnegie Mellon University

Nathaniel Horner and Erin Mayfield


Asst. Prof. Eric Hittinger (Rochester Institute of Technology), Chair of the Case Competition, congratulates Nathaniel Horner and Erin Mayfield.


The United States Association for Energy Economics (USAEE) Case Competition is a team-based competition focused on energy economics, open to teams of current students or recent graduates. This year's problem involved oil company decision-making in the context of shifting US production and consumption patterns. Participating teams worked on the designated case problem over a period of three weeks and submitted a written report detailing their methods and solution to USAEE. The three teams with the best solutions were invited to present their results during the October 25-28, 2015 USAEE/IAEE North American Conference in Pittsburgh, PA, and compete for the top three positions. After three energetic presentations and some serious grilling from the judges, the Carnegie Mellon team (Nathaniel Horner, Erin Mayfield) won first prize ($2500), the University of California, Davis team (Hanjiro Ambrose, Arash Saboori, Ben White) won second ($2000), and the University of California, Berkeley team (Stephanie Moon, Avanti Tamhane, Yuriy Pryadko, Andrey Gutkovsky) won third place ($1500).

Another round of the USAEE Case Competition will be conducted for the 2016 USAEE/IAEE conference in Tulsa, OK.  While details are still being finalized, interested participants should keep an eye on the conference website for registration details. http://www.usaee.org/usaee2016/


2nd Place

University of California, Davis

Hanjiro Ambrose, Arash Saboori, Ben White





Eric Hittinger with Arash Saboori and Hanjiro Ambrose





3rd Place 

University of California, Berkeley

Andrey Gutkovsky, Stephanie Moon, Yuriy Pryadko, Avanti Tamhane 

Eric Hittinger with Stephanie Moon, Andrey Gutkovski and Yuriy Pryadko 



Chair, Case Competition: Eric Hittinger, Asst. Prof., Rocherster Institute of Technology (Rochester, NY)

Judges: Mike Canes, LMI; Tilaklal Doshi, KAPSARC; Shree Vikas, ConocoPhillips



Poster Competition

 Winner of the Competition:

Brock Glasgo

Carnegie Mellon University

"Understanding the potential for electricity savings and assessing feasibility of a transition towards DC-powered buildings"



Brock Glasgo with John Holding (Independent Energy Analyst), Chair of the Poster Competition


The 33rd USAEE/IAEE North American Conference held in Pittsburgh during the period October 25-28, 2015 incorporated - for the fifth year running - a Student Poster Session in which students competed for a single prize of $1000. The winner was Brock Glasgo, a doctoral student from the Centre for Climate and Energy Decision Making at Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh.

Students presented their current research projects in the form of a poster display which was judged against four criteria by undercover judges. The criteria, previously advised to participants were: (1) Originality and novelty of student's work; (2) alignment with overall conference theme; (3) Presentation and Q&A; and (4) Visual quality of poster. The panel of 14 judges covered a range of expertise such that each poster was assessed independently at least 4 times. 

While 25 student posters were accepted on the basis of abstracts submitted there was the inevitable drop-out of numbers for a variety of reasons such that 11 posters were presented and judged on the evening of October 26 when the event was run in conjunction with the Networking Reception. Of the posters, 8 were from students studying in the USA of which 5 were from Pennsylvania; 1 was from Canada, 1 from France and 1 from Malaysia. Judges scores were compiled overnight and the top four contenders were subjected to more detailed scrutiny in order to land on the single prize winner who was announced and awarded his check at the Awards Luncheon on October 27.

In 2016 a similar event will be held at the conference in Tulsa OK (October 23-26): the abstract deadline is May 19, 2016. Students with research underway who wish to try for the $1000 prize to be offered there should start thinking about portraying their work in a dynamic poster format that conveys their work and its implications effectively and appealingly.  Further information may be found at the conference web-site: http://www.usaee.org/usaee2016/


Chair, Poster Competition: John Holding
Judges: Olvar Bergland, Robert Borgström, Mike Canes, Tilak Doshi, Tom Drennen, Kevin Forbes, Eric Hittinger, Lisa Koch, Latika Lagalo,
Ken Medlock, Olga Pushkash, Ron Ripple, Ben Schlesinger and Adonis Yatchew.



Student Mentoring Session

 John Holding welcomes participants to the Student Mentoring Session.

Following a pilot program at our conference in New York City last year, the 33rd USAEE/IAEE North American Conference in Pittsburgh, October 25-28 2015, incorporated a Student Mentoring Session on the Sunday evening prior to the formal conference opening. Here, eight experienced professionals gave up their time to talk openly about their careers in the energy economics sector and to share hard-won lessons with students who visited with them to chat.

Mentors came from a variety of backgrounds: Peter Hartley, Carlo Andrea Bollino and Paulina Jaramillo were from high academia; Lori Schell and Mina Dioun shared their experiences as independent women consultants; Anas Alhajji and Andrew Slaughter chatted from their viewpoints as senior practitioners within major energy consulting firms; and Mine Yücel elaborated her experiences on the way to becoming Senior Vice President and Director of Research at the Dallas Federal Reserve.      

Favorable feedback indicates that a similar Mentoring event will be planned for the 2016 USAEE Conference in Tulsa OK (October 23-26) when different mentors will be on hand.  We encourage students to plan to attend this as at the very least it enhances their networking contacts amongst senior professionals in the energy economics sector and they may well learn something useful!

John Holding – Student Mentoring Session Organizer




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