SFIP’s Energy Sovereignty Institute (ESI) is very pleased to announce the launch of its online information clearinghouse and resource-base at energysovereigntyinstitute.org, as well as a fully funded PhD opportunity with the Rochester Insitute of Technology.

The ESI website offers practical information to support the design and development of sustainable tribal energy projects. These include How-To guides for residential, community facility, and utility scale projects, as well as community microgrid systems. Resources include technical and funding information, case studies, and downloads. There is also a Discussion forum to support stakeholder communications.

About ESI

ESI is a social initiative and collaboration between the Microgrid Systems Lab (an SFIP spinout) and the Sustainable Native Communities Collaborative, designed to promote the benefits of decentralized energy systems and technologies for Native American communities, and to advance their availability and use. ESI’s mission is to ensure that indigenous communities have access to the most current cultural, technological, policy and regulatory, and financing resources in support of their goals in sustainable energy generation, distribution, and consumption.

Native communities can play a critical leadership role in the nation’s transition to a sustainable, resilient, and equitable energy system. The National Renewable Energy Laboratory estimates that while American Indian land comprises about two percent of all U.S. land, Indian lands contain five percent of total U.S. renewable energy resource potential, including high generation potential for solar, wind and hydropower among other renewable resources.

Funded PhD Opportunity at RIT

ESI is collaborating with the Rochester Institute of Technology to offer a fully funded PhD opportunity in energy sovereignty research topics. The ideal student would have significant experience working with Indigenous communities and a strong understanding of and sensitivity to Indigenous culture. Financial support is available to cover tuition and a monthly stipend. Indigenous students are encouraged to apply. RIT is committed to supporting indigenous scholars in STEM fields.

This research, and the sustainability PhD program, is interdisciplinary in nature, involving both qualitative and quantitative methods. A bachelor’s degree is required and a master’s degree would be beneficial. Read the full description, and apply no later than January 15, 2021.