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Energy Analytics Analysis Certificate

The energy system is in the midst of a massive transformation. New public goals, such as deep cuts in emissions, are forcing big changes in technology. Dependence on electricity, already pervasive in modern economies, could more than double as societies shift their habits and activities away from direct combustion of fossil fuels. Moreover, modern energy services play pivotal roles in economic development and are a focal point for many policies aimed at promoting social welfare. 

This flurry of activity has led to many internship and employment opportunities both in the private and public sector for students who can demonstrate that they have a command of new energy concepts. This GPS certificate allows students to signal their knowledge and training in the energy sector. 

Program Overview

The Certificate in Energy Analytics Analysis program allows students to work closely with faculty members who are active in conducting energy market analysis. Students will have opportunities to join faculty projects as research assistants and benefit from involvement in high-quality energy research in topics across the social sciences and engineering. 

The course sequence will put a special emphasis on electric power systems and markets because electricity plays such a central role in modern energy systems and may play a much bigger role in the future with decarbonization.  

The program certificate is open to current students enrolled in a master's degree or Ph.D. program at GPS. The certificate will not show as part of a formal transcript, rather it is a signed “Certificate of Completion” document that you can provide to potential employers or program advisers. You can list it on your resume, CV and applications, documenting that you have developed state of the art skills in this area. 

Questions? Contact Professor David Victor, the director of the Energy Analytics Analysis certificate program.


The Certificate in Energy Analytics Analysis may be earned with the completion of four courses, plus a two-unit field seminar. In order to earn the certificate, students must complete the following courses with a grade of ‘B’ or  better. 

TWO Required Courses

Winter Quarter: 

  • GPPA 463 - Fundamentals of Energy Systems and Innovation or its equivalent in Mechanical  and Aerospace Engineering (MAE 206 - Energy Systems)

This course provides an introduction to every major element of the global energy system along with tools such as levelized cost analysis, learning  curves, diffusion models, basic tools of thermodynamics and others that are the bedrock of most energy analytics. 

Spring Quarter

  • GPGN 495 - Advanced Projects in Energy Analytics

This course is a two-unit certificate course that will begin in spring of 2021 and meet approximately four times. It will include student presentations on projects students have done in other classes (each student must present at least once). It will also include discussion of leading research in energy analytics, such as the transformation of the electric  grid, integration of renewables on California’s grid and the future of natural gas.  

THREE Additional Courses, one each chosen from the following categories: 

  • One class on regulatory economics and tools:  

These courses extend beyond track requirements at GPS to round out analytical tools relevant to market  failure, evaluation of policy alternatives, and policy design. For non-GPS students these courses, in  particular, will be an introduction to tools, anchored in economics, for evaluation of policies and  corporate choices.  

  • For MIA and non-GPS students: GPEC 488 - Environmental and Regulatory Economics* (Fall Quarter)

*Note that non-GPS students will need to take a microeconomics prerequisite

  • For MPP students: GPIM 457 - Cost Benefit Analysis (Fall Quarter) 
  • One course in data analytics or modeling: 

These courses offer advanced techniques for analysis of energy systems and associated complexities  such as environmental externalities. Students with particular interests—for example, the use of big data systems—may petition to substitute a different course for this requirement. The course must include a final project which deals with an energy analytical topic—chosen in consultation with the teaching staff and the certificate staff. 

  • GPEC 443 - Geographical Information Systems (Fall Quarter) 
  • MAE 207 - Electric Power Systems Modeling** (Fall Quarter)

**MAE 207 requires a command of computer programming and linear algebra.

  • One project class: 
    • GPCO 466 - Real World Projects in Energy and the Environment (Spring Quarter) 
    • GPCO 462 - Public Policy Capstone; Real World Projects in Energy and the Environment (Spring Quarter)  
    • For non-GPS students, a quarter-long project class working with a real client or on a real-world energy-related problem, chosen in consultation with the teaching staff and the certificate staff. The project course offers an “end of training” experience to apply all tools to a real-world problem related to energy.