A comprehensive textbook that integrates tools from technology, economics, markets, and policy to approach energy issues using a dynamic systems and capital-centric perspective.
The global energy system is the vital foundation of modern human industrial society. Traditionally studied through separate disciplines of engineering, economics, environment, or public policy, this system can be fully understood only by using an approach that integrates these tools. This textbook is the first to take a dynamic systems perspective on understanding energy systems, tracking energy from primary resource to final energy services through a long and capital-intensive supply chain bounded by both macroeconomic and natural resource systems.
The book begins with a framework for understanding how energy is transformed as it moves through the system with the aid of various types of capital, its movement influenced by a combination of the technical, market, and policy conditions at the time. It then examines the three primary energy subsystems of electricity, transportation, and thermal energy, explaining such relevant topics as systems thinking, cost estimation, capital formation, market design, and policy tools. Finally, the book reintegrates these subsystems and looks at their relation to the economic system and the ecosystem that they inhabit. Practitioners and theorists from any field will benefit from a deeper understanding of both existing dynamic energy system processes and potential tools for intervention.
About the Author
Travis Bradford is a Professor of Professional Practice at Columbia University and former head of the energy and environment graduate program at the School of International and Public Affairs. He teaches and develops curriculum for hundreds of graduate students every year across the policy, business, sustainability, and engineering schools. He is the author of Solar Revolution: The Economic Transformation of the Global Energy Industry, founder and President of Prometheus Institute, and advisor to many public and private entities on energy and business strategy.