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Release to come: “The Smart Grid Workforce of the Future,” Whitepaper

August 18, 2011 author:

Final Drafts of  “The Smart Grid Workforce of the Future,” White Paper are being reviewed.  The paper summarizes findings from a 6-month long, Department of Energy (DOE) funded research project to identify specific skill requirements to be required in the Smart Grid industry and specific training gaps that exist training programs currently.

“In order to create and train a Smart Grid workforce, you have to first identify what you are training them to do, and the best avenues for delivering that training.” said Andrew Barbeau, Managing Director for the Robert W. Galvin Center for Electricity Innovation.

The research is designed as a first step towards creating educational programs, certifications, and materials for Smart Grid professionals-to-be.

Mohammad Shahidehpour, Director of the Galvin Center and Principle Investigator of this project elaborates.  “Our research sheds light on skill requirements necessary for Smart Grid industry sectors not typically top-of-mind when one thinks of Smart Grid technology such as customer management, legal, and organizational management.  A successful industry is going to need much more than engineers to install and maintain components.”

“Much more,” indeed:  research findings identify 98 specific skills related to smart grid technologies and processes, grouped into 12 major categories.

Barbeau discusses next-steps for the Galvin Center’s Smart Grid Education and Workforce Training initiatives.  “Work has already started on the development of effective curricula specifically tailored to these skill areas.”  Now that we have a road map of the needs of the industry, we can really get out there and start building an insightful and highly-trained workforce to power this innovative, emerging industry.