Energy and Natural Resources including water, food, and materials form the most basic and vital inputs to our economy. Without easy access to these inputs the level of global income we currently enjoy would be impossible. Energy, industry’s prime mover, and its related delivery architectures are vital to producing the wealth and welfare of modern society. However the energy sector is not only constrained by its own system dynamics, but by linkages to other resource sectors like water, food, and materials.
Economics is the study of scarcity, and understanding how individuals and businesses optimize their processes and production in the face of limits informs everything in business from budgeting to investment to forecasting. Using a theoretical and practical understanding of the process by which energy technologies are developed, financed, and deployed, this course seeks to highlight the root drivers for change in the energy and natural resource industries, the technologies that are emerging, and the factors that will determine success in their commercialization.
Doing so requires the development of a set of economic and market analysis tools that will allow a rigorous analytic understanding of what is going on in these markets, how buyers and sellers think about market interaction, and the trajectories and occasional dislocations that occur.
Travis Bradford was a Columbia Business School faculty member from 2013 to 2016.