Peter Kelly-Detwiler Morning Workshop

New Developments, Continuing Innovations, an the Ongoing Evolution of the Texas Power Market

Monday, October 22, 2018
8:30am to 12:00pm

Following on last year’s successful and standing-room only workshop, we offer a reprise and an upgrade of  “The Evolution of Texas Electricity Markets and the Impact of Emerging Technologies.” A lot has happened in the last year, both globally and in Texas. You’ll find out what happened and why it matters in this pre-game workshop on Monday morning!


What Are We Going To Talk About?

The workshop will be an expanded version of last year’s standing room only event (to be clear, it was a smaller room!).  We will focus on how quickly renewables (and storage) technology is evolving, how that evolution is affecting costs of renewable energy, and how the entire energy ecosystem is advancing.

We will look at everything that affects the electric energy space and impacts renewables, from the basics of blockchain to the cost of cobalt in the Congo to the technology of turbines in Texas. We will highlight the key factors that will affect the renewable energy prospects in Texas, and the importance of current and potential future market rules.  And we will look at ‘postcards from the future’ - from other states and countries - that suggest where the Texas renewable economy may go in the years to come.

How Will The Workshop Be Run?

The workshop will be an engaging and interactive session, with opportunities for attendees to engage and ask questions throughout the presentation. Subjects will be covered thoroughly, yet in a timely fashion, with the following thoughts in mind:

Many Attendees Are Subject Matter Experts, with Something Valuable to Offer

After offering literally dozens of workshops over the past five years, with some lasting as long as 12 hours, one thing has become very clear: Nearly every attendee in the room knows more about at least one specific subject being covered than the presenter.  There are subject matter experts for every possible topic being addressed.

At the same time, that depth of subject matter expertise comes at some cost. These experts can’t possibly make the time to follow all of the other topics related to the ways we produce and consume our electrons.  The presenter’s job, therefore, is to reach across all the fields and connect the dots, while also making use of the expertise in the room.

People Often Need Permission to Ask Questions

Getting attendees to ask questions can be a challenge: many individuals are uncomfortable asking what they fear may be a stupid question, particularly in the company of people they don’t know. Larger groups raise that barrier.

However the unasked question is the sign of a poor presenter/facilitator. The job of the presenter is to encourage questions since in truth they are not interruptions but rather an indicator of engagement and curiosity. A question from one attendee is often viewed by others as permission to engage at that level as well. Questions often lead to entirely new areas of inquiry, which is the point of a good workshop.

Life (not Death) by PowerPoint

Presentation of content is critical as well. ‘Death by PPT’ is an outcome desperately to be avoided.  The key is to use slides that either present compelling information or create curiosity, so that attendees want to know why they were chosen and what they signify.  We have curated over 600 slides over the past 6 years, from hundreds of sources, so we should be able to offer some value in this area.

The Narrative is Critical

Storytelling is important. Four hours of sitting in a conference room can be a painful endurance contest. So we will season the conversation with ‘mental Velcro,’ the stories that make the point, and the narratives that stick.

At the end of the workshop, the goal is that each attendee walks away with a new or different way of thinking about the energy world we live in. It’s a global world that changes each and every day, which will give us plenty to talk about.  Come to GridNEXT and join the conversation!

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