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Speaker spotlights

Shurooque Baloch

Operability Product Manager, National Grid ESO

Shurooque Baloch is a chartered engineer with over a decade of experience in the electricity transmission planning and operation. Her role is to identify future operability risks, define system requirements and enable creation of long-term solutions to operate the system.

Keith Bell

Climate Change Committee and Co-director, UK Energy Research Centre, Professor of Smart Grids, University of Strathclyde

Keith Bell holds the Scottish Power Chair in Future Power Systems at the University of Strathclyde. He joined the University in 2005 having previously worked as an electrical engineering researcher in Bath, Manchester and Naples, and as a system development engineer in the electricity supply industry in Britain.

He is apointed member of the UK’s Climate Change Committee (CCC), a co-Director of the UK Energy Research Centre and is involved in CIGRE, the International Council of Large Electric Systems. He is a Chartered Engineer and a Fellow of the Royal Society of Edinburgh, and has advised the Scottish, UK and Irish governments and the UK’s office of gas and electricity markets, Ofgem, on electrical energy and power systems issues.

Scientific Director of the Electrical Infrastructure Research Hub established by the University of Strathclyde with the Offshore Renewable Energy Catapult.

Keith Bell receives funding from the UKRI, Climate XChange, Scottish Power, SSE, Wood Group and National Grid ESO.

Adam Berman

Deputy Director for Generation Policy, Energy UK

In this position, he advocates for ways to speed up the UK’s journey to Net-Zero through enabling low-carbon investment in clean power generation. Adam’s role is to ensure that Energy UK works closely with policymakers toward market-based policies that harness the power of the business community to drive the energy transition.   

Prior to Energy UK, Adam was European Policy Director at IETA (International Emissions Trading Association), an organisation which advocates for robust and effective carbon pricing nd advice on European Climate Policy,with a particular emphasis on the EU’s Emissions Trading System (EU ET.)

Previous roles included working as an analyst in the energy industry on international climate policy issues, and as a researcher in Parliament.

Jonathan Berry

Data & Digitalisation Manager, Western Power Distribution

Jonathan is currently Data & Digitalisation Manager at Western Power Distribution and has worked in the electricity distribution industry since 2006. He has previously held a number of roles within the organisation, most recently leading WPD’s innovation programme.

He now leads the digitalisation and data activity, focussing on increasing access to and insights from data, data quality, and developing and employing digitalised solutions to enable benefit to driven to a wide range of internal and external stakeholders. His work focuses on ensuring that WPD has the ability to meet and exceed data and digital requirements, serving current and future needs of the energy system and delivering data and digitalisation developments in line with stakeholder and customer requirements. 

Jonathan also has a particular interest in delivering new systems and solutions to benefit customers, stakeholders and the industry as a whole. He is a member of CIRED’s Session 4 Advisory Group; Distributed Energy Resources and Active Demand Integration.

Andy Goodwin

Head of Hydrogen Economics and Markets, ScottishPower

Andy is an economist and public policy professional with 15 years’ experience in the private sector and 10 years in the UK Government. He joined ScottishPower’s Corporate Regulation team in 2013, with a recent focus on policy around the decarbonisation of heat and transport, before joining the Hydrogen team at the start of 2021.

Whilst in Government, Andy worked on the Electricity Market Reform programme, designing the instrument for promoting investment in low carbon generation (CfD). Andy has an MBA in the Global Energy Industry from Strathclyde University and Comillas University, Madrid.

Jeff Douglas

Energy Systems Specialist

Jeff Douglas is an energy systems specialist, and a Chartered Engineer and Fellow of The Institution of Engineering and Technology (IET).

His background is in electricity networks, having led on strategic development and network investment for a UK network operator.

More recently he has worked on the decarbonisation of heat, and whole energy system integration for The Energy Technologies Institute and The Energy Systems Catapult.

He is a member of the IET’s Energy Panel and the lead author of the IET paper ‘UK renewables – limitless energy or a precious resource?’

Jon Gluyas

Chair in Geoenergy, Carbon Capture & Storage, Orsted

His current research examines the utility of abandoned and late-life petroleum fields for supplying geothermal energy as well as the possibility that deep karst in Carboniferous limestones could also make major contribution the UK’s heating requirements as well as reducing the national carbon footprint. 

Deborah Greaves OBE

Director, Supergen ORE Hub

Deborah Greaves is Head of the School of Engineering, Computing and Mathematics, Professor of Ocean Engineering and Director of the COAST Laboratory at the University of Plymouth with previous appointments at Oxford, UCL and the University of Bath.

Her research interests include marine and offshore renewable energy, and physical and numerical modeling of wave-structure interaction. She has led many national and international research projects concerning offshore renewable energy (ORE) in collaboration with industrial and academic partners and in 2017 was appointed by EPSRC as the new ORE Supergen Leader, directing the UK research programme in ORE. She recently published with Wiley an edited book on Wave and Tidal Energy (2018) and in the Queen’s Birthday Honours List, 2018, she was awarded an OBE for services to Marine Renewable Energy, Equalities, and Higher Education.

Patrick Harnett

Vice President Programmes, Ørsted

Vice President Programme Hornsea 2.  The worlds biggest offshore windfarm 1400MW capacity proving enough green energy for 1.3m homes.

Previously - Senior EPC Director HOW02, Orsted; MD of British Gas Solar, Centrica; Head of Operational Excellence, Centrica; Lincs 275MW Offshore Windfarm Project Director, Centrica.

Dr Nicola Higgins

UK Offshore Wind Programme Director, Renewable Electricity, BEIS

Nicola took up the role of Director for the UK Government Offshore Wind Programme in September 2021.

She has held a wide range of roles in the Civil Service, at the Ministry of Defence, Department of Energy and Climate Change, Department for Communities and Local Government, and Department for Business Energy and Industrial Strategy.

Nicola has also worked in a number of government partner organisations including the Oil and Gas Authority, where she was Head of Strategy and Policy, and the UK Space Agency, where she was Director of Regulation.

A social scientist by training, Nicola spent her early career in academia and has a PhD from the University of Cambridge.

Andrew Jamieson

Chief Executive, ORE Catapult

Andrew is Chief Executive of the Offshore Renewable Energy Catapult, a UK wide technology and innovation centre supporting businesses to accelerate the design, deployment and commercialisation of offshore renewable energy – wind, wave and tidal power. Jamieson brings over 40 years experience in the Energy sector.

He was previously at ScottishPower where he was latterly responsible for energy policy and regulation in the renewables business.

Andrew sits on the Scottish Government’s Energy Advisory Board, is a past Chair of RenewableUK and Scottish Renewables and has led a number of reports for Government, including the Cost Reduction Task Force for Offshore Wind in 2012.

Maria Kalogera

Innovations Manager, CrossWind

Maria is the Innovations Manager of CrossWind and has an Electrical Engineering background (MSc in Power Systems and Sustainable Energy Technologies from TU Delft). Since joining Shell, Maria has worked on mega projects (Prelude and Browse FLNG) and in offshore wind projects (Borssele 3,4 and CrossWind).

Maria has an insatiable curiosity for emerging technologies, energy transition and finding solutions to tackle energy resource scarcity. In her current role, she is leading the Innovations Scope within the CrossWind Joint Venture. 

Eoin Kennedy

Head of Future Operations, EirGrid

Eoin Kennedy is Head of Future Operations at EirGrid Group, which is the electricity Transmission System Operator and Market Operator in Ireland and Northern Ireland.

In this role, he is responsible for delivering EirGrid’s key innovation programme of work known as DS3 (‘Delivering a Secure, Sustainable Electricity System’) as well as leading a new programme to develop and put in place the operational systems, tools, services and policies required to operate the Ireland and Northern Ireland power system in 2030.

Eoin holds a PhD in Electronic Engineering from Dublin City University and an MBA from UCD Michael Smurfit Graduate Business School.

Julian Leslie

Head of Networks & Chief Engineer, National Grid ESO

Responsible for identifying the future GB transmission network capability requirements and then making economic recommendations as to which options to take forward.

Also responsible for granting system access (connections) to future generation and managing system access for the transmission owners, existing generation, DNOs and demand sites for all timescales year ahead and beyond.

All this needs to be completed whilst maintaining system operability in the year ahead to five year ahead timescales.

Rannveig Loken

Head of Innovation and Technology, Statnett

Received her Master of Science in Electric Power Engineering from the Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU) in 1992.

She works in Statnett, the TSO of Norway, currently the Acting Director Innovation and Technology Department in Statnett. In August 2012, she became the secretary of Cigre SC B5. She has been the Chair of SC B5 since September 2018. Her special field of interest is the protection and control of the transmission system.

In addition, working in Cigre Working groups is of great interest - she is currently a member of WG B5.69. Rannveig is on the Advisory board of PAC world, a Commit­tee member of DPSP, and a Member of the International Advisory Committee APAP.

Niall McDonald

Chief Engineer, OFGEM

Niall is currently Chief Engineer with Ofgem; 23 years industry experience.  19 of which across Transmission Operations, Project Delivery, Regulatory Planning and Reporting, Investment Planning and Telecoms in 2 Ofgem Regulated Licensees before coming to Ofgem, initially as Principal Engineer.

Noel McGoldrick

Interconnector Operations Asset Policy Manager, National Grid Ventures

Noel is Asset Policy Manager for National Grid Ventures Interconnectors Operations Team. In this role Noel manages the development of policy and the asset management systems for National Grid Ventures HVDC interconnectors to France and Norway.

Prior to taking up this role Noel was the lead project manager for the delivery of the North Sea Link converter station at Blyth in the UK, managing the overall delivery schedule, detailed technical design assurance and grid integration.

Iain Miller

Head of innovation, Northern PowerGrid

Iain joined the company in 1992 as a graduate trainee and went on to work in asset management, system design, and project management.  In the early 2000s, he trained other utilities in asset management practice, including Excel (Colorado, USA), ESB (Eire) and West of Scotland Water. 

As Head of System Design, Iain had responsibility for the both the internal and customer facing design functions until being seconded to Northern Powergrid’s efforts on the RIIO-ED1 regulatory review, including working on the smartgrids part of the CMA appeal.  Following the successful appeal, Iain worked on improving customer satisfaction within our connections business and developing best engineering practice across network companies within the Berkshire Hathaway Energy group.

Iain took up his present post as Head of Innovation in September 2016, with responsibility for the company’s innovation portfolio, and particular interests in customer facing innovation.

He has recently been central to developing NPg’s RIIO-ED2 plan submissions on innovation and whole systems, and is involved in innovation across the parent company through BHE’s grid innovation collaborative.

Priyanka Mohapatra

Grid and Regulation Manager, ScottishPower Renewables

Priyanka Mohapatra works as Grid and Regulation manager at ScottishPower Renewables. In her role, she focusses on enabling system and grid flexibility services from renewable generators and storage technologies in GB and Ireland.

Priyanka has worked in the field of innovation in her previous roles with SP Energy Networks, OMICRON electronics and Siemens Energy.

She has led and delivered globally innovative projects such as VISOR, FITNESS and Phoenix, enabling roll-out of digital substations, wide area monitoring systems and hybrid compensator technologies in GB and helped LANDSNET, Iceland with full scale digitalisation of Icelandic power networks.

Paul Monks

Chief Scientific Advisor, Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) 

Professor Paul Monks is the Chief Scientific Adviser (CSA) for the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS). As BEIS CSA, he delivers independent and impartial scientific advice to Ministers and policy makers across the BEIS portfolio.

The BEIS CSA portfolio spans a wide range of policy areas, including energy (such as nuclear (fission and fusion), geothermal and hydrogen), climate change, electric vehicles, medical radionuclides, space and national security.

His role also covers advising on current and ongoing issues faced by UK businesses and industry, with recent focus on the critical role of science in supporting sustainable, resilient and measurable Net Zero and the challenges of delivering national and global decarbonisation.

Professor Paul Monks also works closely with the Government Chief Scientific Adviser, other Departmental CSAs, and BEIS Chief Economist, to strengthen the links within and across departments, encouraging effective engagement and knowledge sharing, and to support delivery of a robust evidence base to underpin BEIS policy decisions.

Throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, as an active member of COVID-19 SAGE, and as co-chair of SAGE-EMG subgroup, Professor Paul Monks has also input to developing and improving understanding of the impacts of the pandemic, including on events such as weddings, nightclubs and festivals, and advised on the development and evolution of public guidelines.

Prior to joining the department, Professor Paul Monks was Pro-Vice Chancellor and Head of College of Science and Engineering at the University of Leicester, where he remains a Professor in Atmospheric Chemistry and Earth Observation Science. 

Gary Preece

Director, Power System Development, Highview Power

Gary is a Chartered Electrical Engineer with over 30 years of experience in the power industry. Having completed numerous power system designs that have been successfully implemented, he is a well-respected consulting engineer and led the design team for the power system on the Type 26 Global Combat Ship, a class of frigate being built for the United Kingdom’s Royal Navy that is now in production with BAE Systems.

Prior to joining Highview Power, he was Lead Engineer at Drax Power Ltd, where he managed the power system development of numerous projects including NOx abatement, carbon capture and storage.

In addition, Gary led the power system team on the newly approved 1.8GW CCGT plant and Drax on-site Synchronous Condenser. Gary joined Highview Power in 2019 and brings experience in dealing with National Grid connections and regulation.

Laura Sandys CBE

Chair Government's Energy Digitalisation Taskforce

She is chair of the Government’s Energy Digitalisation Taskforce driving change in energy and is chair of the British Standards Institute Advisory board on Net Zero.  She is also an Independent Director at SGN Network chairing the ESG Committee and on the board of the Energy Systems Catapult and Highview Power.  She was Chair of the Northern Ireland Expert Panel on Energy Transition and was a member of the Advisory Panel for the Government’s Cost of Energy Review, and is on the Ministerial Council for Carbon Capture Utilisation and Storage.

She is founder of the Food Foundation, co-founder of POWERful Women and former Deputy Chair of the Food Standards Agency.

She was previously a Member of Parliament for South Thanet, and described by The Times as ‘one of the sanest of all MPs’ and as ‘lateral-minded, original and free-thinking’.

Nina Skorupska CBE

Chief Executive, REA

Dr Nina Skorupska CBE FEI is the chief executive of the Renewable Energy Association, the UK’s largest renewables and clean technology trade association with over 750 company members.

She previously held several senior leadership roles within the RWE Group, including joining the Board of the RWE’s Dutch business, Essent, as Chief Technical Officer. She is currently vice president of the European Renewable Energy Federation and member of the board of the Women in Science and Engineering Campaign. Nina was awarded a CBE in 2016.

Inès Tunga

Renewables Practice Manager, Energy Systems Catapult

At Energy Systems Catapult, Inès is responsible for renewables, wind, wave, tidal, and solar, and their impacts on the UK energy system.

She is an experienced subject matter expert, driving value across renewable energy projects covering electrical machines,  materials, hydrodynamics, manufacturing, and marine operations.

She engages regularly with national and international governments, and industry and academic stakeholders to help define and develop collaborative projects that will benefit the sector.

She formerly worked as a Research Engineer in Offshore Wind at the Energy Technologies Institute. Inès holds an Engineering Doctorate in Offshore Renewable Energy from the consortium of Edinburgh, Exeter, and Strathclyde universitie.

Bart Ummels

Principal Technical Expert, CrossWind

Bart Ummels is an offshore wind power expert with 18 years of industry, project and research experience.

He has worked in senior engineering, construction management and project management roles in offshore wind since 2008.

Bart supports CrossWind on its Dutch Hollandse Kust Noord project, in particular on the base-load power hub. Since 2019 he is also part-time Lecturer Offshore Wind Energy at Delft University of Technology, the Netherlands.

Bart holds a PhD in Electrical Engineering (2009) and a MSc in Systems Engineering, Policy and Management (2004), both from TU Delft.

Dr Alan Whitehead

Shadow Energy and Green New Deal Minister, Hon Vice-Chair, PRASEG

Alan has been the Shadow Minister for Energy and the Green New Deal since April 2020 and served as the Shadow Energy and Climate Change Minister October 2016 – April 2020 and the Shadow DECC Minister for Generation and Transmission September 2015 – June 2016. 

During his time in office he has championed the development of a new decarbonised energy landscape. He is frequently lauded by his fellow parliamentarians for his grasp of the complexities of this policy area.

Since becoming the Labour MP for Southampton Test in 1997 Alan has served on the Select Committees for Environment, Transport and the Regions; Energy and Climate Change and Environmental Audit. He has a Ph.D. in Political Science from Southampton University.