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2022 Energy Conference

The next decade of the energy transition

  • Grid modernisation & energy equity

  • Decarbonization technology for hard-to-abate sectors

  • Financial levers for scaling clean energy

After hosting the conference virtually over the past two years, we are pleased to host an in-person event at the historic Cambridge Union.

*This will be held online as a web series due to the current COVID-19 situation.

The theme of this year’s conference is ”A Pathway towards the Net-zero Economy: Challenges and Opportunities”, and will bring together leading energy professionals, key influencers, academicians and students to discuss the progress the industry has made toward transitioning to low carbon sources of energy and the actions that are required to progress further for achieving Net-zero economy.

Thursday 9th June 2022

11:30 am - 6:30 pm (BST)

Cambridge Union

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The yearly conference is meant to bring together professionals, academics, students and any interested parties in an environment conducive to the sharing of knowledge and experiences.


This year we hope to initiate dialogues and conversations on pertinent topics impacting the next decade of the energy transition.

Join us for lots of professional networking, food & drinks!

Image by Antenna


Opening Remarks
How today's biggest trends will reshape the future of everything

Mauro Guillen

Dean, Cambridge Judge Business School

Mauro Guillen is the Dean of Cambridge Judge Business School. A former Guggenheim and Fulbright Fellow, Dean Guillen is the author of ten books and over 40 scholarly articles, including the bestseller "2030: How Today's Biggest Trends Will Collide and Reshape the Future of Everything" (August 2020). He frequently contributes on NPR, Bloomberg TV, CCTV (China News), CNN en español, and other broadcast media. He has also lectured and conducted workshops for major corporations such as Deutsche Bank, Google, Hyundai, China Merchants Bank, UnitedHealth Group, and Santander.

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Keynote Speaker
The energy trilemma: balancing energy security, affordability and emissions

Claire Dykta

Head of UK Strategy, National Grid

Claire is UK Head of Strategy for National Grid, one of the world’s largest investor-owned energy companies. She has worked in a diverse range of regulatory, commercial and operational roles and has been at the sharp end of changes in the UK Power sector, including being responsible for optimizing the power grid for the first UK coal-free day. 


Claire is passionate about driving the transition to a decarbonised energy system through embracing innovative and disruptive technologies, championing the role of the consumer and promoting the importance of diversity and inclusion in the energy sector.  She has been named in the @rise_utils list of the top 25 UK influencers in the energy industry, in the top 1000 @SustMeme global influencers on Climate & Energy and recognized in the 2020 HERoes women executives list.  She sits on the Advisory Board for the Oxford University-run UK Centre for Research on Energy Demand and also on the Advisory Board for the Cambridge Energy Policy Research Group. 

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Panel Discussion
Bridging the Gap: Financing Energy Equity in Emerging Markets
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Dr. Ramit Debnath

Session Chair

Ramit Debnath is a computational social scientist and a Gates Scholar based at the University of Cambridge, passionate about energy and climate justice. He is a Laudes Foundation Research Associate in Climate Policy at the Centre for Natural Materials Innovation and an affiliated member of the Energy Policy Research Group at Judge Business School and AI4ER CDT Programme. Ramit is also a visiting scholar at Caltech in the US and International Energy Agency in France. He works closely with the energy, climate, and tech industry in advisory roles, with recent policy work being referred at UN COP26.

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Peter Maila

Investment Director, Direct Equity Investments Africa & South East Asia, BII

Peter is a member of British International Investment’s Africa Team, based in London. He supports British International Investment’s equity, debt and fund investment teams throughout Africa.


Peter has worked in the private equity, investment banking and telecommunications industries for 15 years. Prior to joining British International Investment in 2012, he was Investment Director, Principal Investments at HSBC in London. Before that, Peter was Head of Leverage and Acquisition Finance Africa at Rand Merchant Bank (RMB) and at Standard Bank in South Africa. He also worked as Financial Manager supporting Vodacom’s South African and Tanzanian operations.


Peter is a qualified Chartered Accountant and holds a BCom (Hon) in Accounting and Auditing from the University of KwaZulu-Natal in South Africa.

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Tobias Engelmeier

Co-Founder, Village Data Analytics

Tobias is a social technology entrepreneur working on climate change and climate justice. He has built two businesses in India, where he lived for 7 years, and one in Africa - all around distributed solar energy. With Village Data Analytics (VIDA) he now wants to change the way we invest in the 2 billion people living in villages in Africa and Asia, to give them access to critical infrastructure, connect them to a low-carbon, digital economy and make them more resilient to climate change. For that, VIDA uses the best available data technology.

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Tim Campbell

Former Private Equity Managing Director, Goldman Sachs

Tim was until recently a Managing Director in the Merchant Banking Division of Goldman Sachs, focused on energy investments in EMEA and India.

Tim joined the Principal Investment Area of Goldman Sachs in 2003 and has been responsible for investments in oil field services, exploration and production, offshore wind, testing and inspection, and wind and solar power generation.

Prior to joining Goldman Sachs, Tim received undergraduate and post-graduate degrees in Economics from the University of Oxford.

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Dr Christina Peñasco

University of Cambridge

Dr Cristina Peñasco is a University Lecturer in public Policy at POLIS. At Cambridge she is also a Bye-Fellow at Queens' College, a Centre Fellow at Centre for the Environment, Energy and Natural Resource Governance (C-EENRG) hosted at the Department of Land Economy, and an associate researcher of the Bennett Institute for Public Policy.


Her research lines bring together multidisciplinary research in environmental economics, innovation policy and energy economics in green and energy efficiency technologies, with a focus on the policy instruments enabling the transition to low-carbon economies. She has a strong background on statistical and quantitative methods of analysis and econometric techniques that has served her to publish several articles in world-class journals such as Technological and Economic Development of the Economy, Energy Policy or Business Strategy and the Environment, among others.

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Cambridge University Energy Technology Society Keynote Speech
Emerging Technology in Hard-to-Abate Sectors; Net Zero Aviation
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Dr. Paul Hodgson

Research & Development Director, NanoSUN

Paul Hodgson is a chemical engineer with a research background in biofuel manufacture, hydrogen distribution and carbon capture processes. His PhD research in the Department of Chemical Engineering at the University of Cambridge focused on building first order, holistic systems models to uncover unlocks in biobutanol production, which were then patented with Cambridge Enterprise. His subsequent research has investigated carbon capture options in other hard-to-abate sectors such the steel industry, prior to developing the early models at the Aviation Impact Accelerator in the Whittle Laboratory where he is now the Technical Lead. Paul’s research has aimed to help progress industrial change directly. To this end, Paul has completed an online MBA program from Quantic as well as co-founding a compressed hydrogen distribution start-up, NanoSUN, where he still spends some of his time pioneering novel solutions and leading R&D in this business. He also spends a small portion of his time lecturing courses on how to model and develop first-pass design of chemical plants, and teaching as a Bye-Fellow of Churchill College.

Panel Discussion
Leading the Charge: Creating a Fundamental Mindset Shift
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Katy Jarratt

Session Chair, Leading of UK Sustainability Practice, Spencer Stuart

Katy is a consultant in Spencer Stuart’s Energy and Industrial practices and leads the firm’s sustainability efforts in the UK. Her work focuses on executive and board leadership impact in ESG, sustainability and the energy transition, offering our clients strategic advice to innovate and accelerate their delivery of long term sustainable systems.

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James Brooks

Founding Partner, Stanley Capital

Until September 2021 he was on the leadership team of Shell’s R&ES division, responsible for strategy and investment decision making for platforms across power, e-mobility, hydrogen, carbon offsets and venture investing


From 2016 to 2020, James co-led the rapid growth of Lightsource BP to become a global leader in the renewable energy sector. In that same period, James founded, raised and worked as managing partner of one of the world’s largest emerging market-focused green private equity funds, Eversource Capital, and completed investments across utility scale and distributed energy, mobility, water and waste management sectors.


Prior to joining Lightsource BP, James was co-head of EMEA Energy and UK & Ireland for Goldman Sachs’s Merchant Banking Division, its principal investment platform. Prior to GS, James worked at First Reserve and Advent International. James holds a Masters and BA degree in Physics from Merton College, University of Oxford.

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Irena Spazzapan

Managing Partner, Stystemiq Capital

Irena is the Managing Partner of the VC fund Systemiq Capital, focusing on climate tech early stage investments in Europe and North America. Previously she ran the investment side of SYSTEMIQ, the global thought leader and investment firm dedicated to climate change.


An energy professional by background, Irena joined SYSTEMIQ in 2018 to build the investment team and leading it to the spin off into Systemiq Capital. Irena invests in Series A companies across 4 ecosystems: sustainable food & materials, clean transport, climate intelligence and climate restoration. Existing companies include ZeroAvia, Jupiter Intelligence, Circulor, Charm Industrial, etc. Exits include OpenInvest, Upside Energy. She is a Board Director with the global power-to-hydrogen developer H1 Energy and with the methane certification company MIQ. Previously she was a Director at Capterio and Upside Energy. 


Irena was at Goldman Sachs for 13 years until 2017, leading Gas and Power Origination in Europe. She started her career at UNRWA in Syria. Irena has degrees from the University of Trieste and SOAS. She is a CFA charterholder.

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Greg Dujon

Chief Executive Officer, ThirdEquation

Greg Dujon is a former management consultant with an outstanding track record for delivering profitable business growth, innovative strategies and leadership to address new markets and technologies.
Experienced in building profitable multi-faceted businesses through global transactions and rigorous planning, using creative and entrepreneurial talents. He is currently the CEO of ThirdEquation, a company created to design and develop new IP technology solutions that will accelerate the energy system transition to a carbon-free future.

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Keynote Speech
The Future of Cities
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Martin Powell

Head of Sustainability & Environmental Initiatives Americas, Siemens Financial Services Inc.

Martin Powell has worked at the convergence of business transformation, energy, sustainability, politics and finance over the last 15 years of his career. He is currently Head of Sustainability and Environmental Initiatives at Siemens Financial Services Inc. with the task of analysing technology trends and devising investment strategies to transform the entire Siemens portfolio into a green portfolio. Alongside his current role at Siemens, Martin has also written and edited a book called The Climate City, discussing the technological, financial, and practical aspects of tackling climate change in the regions and cities of the world. Prior to Siemens, Martin worked first at an engineering consultancy, and at Network Rail, then as the Mayor’s Advisor on the Environment in London during Boris Johnson’s mayorship. This involved writing and conducting all environment policy reviews and environmental strategy, managing media and corporate relations and speech writing. After this, he went on to be Michael Bloomberg’s Special Environmental Advisor to the C40 Cities Group in New York, which is a climate change knowledge-sharing network of the world’s megacities.

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