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Recording and Slides Now Available Best Practices for Water Use at Thermoelectric Facilities in Chile and Latin America

MIT SDM Systems Thinking Webinar Series

From left: Jorge Moreno, SDM ’11; Donny Holaschutz, SDM ’10; and Carolina Gomez

Jorge Moreno and Donny Holaschutz, Cofounders, inodú; SDM Alumni
Carolina Gomez, Sustainable Development Division, Ministry of Energy, Chile

Date: May 8, 2017


Slides available here.

About the Presentation

Thermoelectric facilities are significant users of water, yet a variety of environmental, institutional, and social challenges have been triggered by withdrawing water from natural sources for this use. Some common hazards include impingement and entrainment of water organisms, the release of chemicals into the water, thermal pollution in the mixing zone, and water loss.

In this webinar, SDM alumni and inodú cofounders Jorge Moreno and Donny Holaschutz will join Carolina Gomez of Chile’s Ministry of Energy to describe best practices for water use at thermoelectric facilities and how Chile has approached its environmental, institutional, and social challenges. They will provide

  • an overview of some of the challenges caused by water use at thermoelectric facilities;
  • a summary of associated policy and regulatory initiatives in Chile; and
  • highlights from a recently published guide to best practices—the first of its kind in Latin America—that was developed by Chile’s Ministry of Energy with inodú.

A Q&A will follow the presentation. We invite you to join us!

About the Speakers

SDM alumnus Donny Holaschutz is a cofounder of the energy and sustainability consultancy inodú. He is a seasoned entrepreneur with experience in both for- and not-for-profit ventures related to energy and sustainability. He holds a master’s degree in engineering and management from MIT and bachelor’s and master’s degrees in aerospace engineering from the University of Texas at Austin.

SDM alumnus and inodú cofounder Jorge Moreno has extensive experience in the energy industry in the United States and Latin America. He holds an MS in engineering and management from MIT and bachelor’s and master’s degrees in electrical engineering from the Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile.

Carolina Gomez works in the Sustainable Development Division at the Ministry of Energy in Chile, where she focuses on improving environmental impact assessments for energy and developing environmental standards for the country. She holds degrees in industrial civil engineering with a specialization in environmental engineering from the Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile and an MSc in environmental technology from Imperial College London.

About the Series

Sponsored by the System Design & Management (SDM) program at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), the MIT SDM Systems Thinking Webinar Series features research conducted by SDM faculty, alumni, students, and industry partners. The series is designed to disseminate information on how to employ systems thinking to address engineering, management, and socio-political components of complex challenges. Recordings and slides from prior SDM webinars can be accessed here.

Recording and Slides Now Available: Can a Life-Cycle Assessment Model Aid Sustainability Negotiations?

MIT Systems Thinking Webinar Series

Ellen Czaika, PhD, Head of Global Engagement, Gamaya; SDM Alumna

Ellen Czaika, SDM ’08

Date: April 10, 2017


Slides available here.

About the Presentation

Supply chain partners often work together to negotiate a more environmentally friendly end of life for their product. However, while they can typically agree on issues such as sustainability, environmental protection, financial feasibility, and social impact, partners are frequently unable to reconcile disparate business strategies. This can result in serious disagreements about how to reach common goals.

In this webinar, SDM alumna Dr. Ellen Czaika, head of global engagement at Gamaya, will discuss her research into whether a life-cycle assessment model can help. She will:

  • explain what a life-cycle assessment model is, why such a model can improve negotiations, and how she tested the model’s benefits in her research;
  • compare the benefits of using an expert-created model versus one created by the parties involved;
  • detail ways to use the model to test alternatives; and
  • provide recommendations for other sustainability negotiations.

A Q&A will follow the presentation. We invite you to join us.

About the Speaker

Dr. Ellen Czaika is head of global engagement for Gamaya, a spinoff of École Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne that uses machine learning on hyperspectral imagery to help farmers increase their crop yields to feed the growing global population. Czaika holds a PhD from MIT and two master’s degrees: one in in applied statistics from the University of Oxford and one in engineering and management received as a graduate of MIT System Design & Management (SDM). Her doctoral research builds on her SDM master’s thesis and investigates how quantitative models can be used in sustainability negotiations and decisions. She currently applies this interest in data-driven decision-making to the precision agriculture domain.

About the Series

Sponsored by the System Design & Management (SDM) program at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), the MIT SDM Systems Thinking Webinar Series features research conducted by SDM faculty, alumni, students, and industry partners. The series is designed to disseminate information on how to employ systems thinking to address engineering, management, and socio-political components of complex challenges. Recordings and slides from prior SDM webinars can be accessed here.