Robert M. La Follette School of Public Affairs
Monday, April 25, 2016

K-12 Energy Education Program honors Nemet as tops in higher ed

Scott Williams, left, accepted the 2016 Higher Education Energy Educator of the Year Award on behalf of Gregory Nemet. Scott Williams, left, accepted the 2016 Higher Education Energy Educator of the Year Award on behalf of Gregory Nemet.

The Wisconsin K-12 Energy Education Program (KEEP) honored La Follette School of Public Affairs faculty member Gregory Nemet with its 2016 Higher Education Energy Educator of the Year Award. Nemet received the award for his willingness to work across traditional disciplinary boundaries, pulling knowledge from science, engineering, economics, and policy, and packaging it in a way that is accessible to any audience.

Nemet is an associate professor in the La Follette School and the Center for Sustainability and the Global Environment at the University of Wisconsin-Madison’s Nelson Institute for Environmental Studies. He also is chair of the Energy Analysis and Policy certificate program. His research and teaching focus on improving analysis of the global energy system and, more generally, on understanding how to expand access to energy services while reducing environmental impacts.

Nemet was nominated by Scott Williams (MPA ’10), who said: “Students in his courses come from a wide variety of disciplines, so not only is he able to structure his lectures and assignments to put everyone on an equal footing, but he also encourages discussion and utilizes the knowledge of the students, who are often subject matter experts in their own right, to answer other students’ questions.” Williams, research and education coordinator for the Wisconsin Energy Institute (WEI), accepted the award on Nemet’s behalf at a ceremony April 30. 

The award recognizes individuals who are taking the extra step to improve energy literacy among students and teachers by helping learners gain the knowledge and skills needed to analyze and resolve energy issues while making wise energy decisions. KEEP leverages teacher education to improve and increase energy literacy in Wisconsin's K-12 schools as a means of contributing to statewide energy savings.

Nemet, who joined UW-Madison’s faculty in 2007, is on sabbatical for the 2015-2016 academic year in Berlin, Germany, at the Mercator Research Institute on Global Commons and Climate Change and the German Institute for Economic Research.

He recently led a study that identified the drivers of low-cost solar photovoltaic (PV) systems and the states in which they are most likely to occur. For the study, the team evaluated more than 40,000 small-scale solar systems installed in the United States in 2013. Read more on the WEI website