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"If you judge a fish by its ability to climb a tree it will spend its entire life thinking that it is stupid." - Einstein

Dr. Destenie Nock leads the Society, Policy, Infrastructure, Climate, & Energy (SPICE) Lab at Carnegie Mellon. She is an Assistant Professor of Civil & Environmental Engineering as well as Engineering & Public Policy at Carnegie Mellon University. She is also the CEO of Peoples Energy Analytics (a spin-out of Carnegie Mellon University).


Her research is focused on eradicating energy poverty across the globe, ensuring policy makers have tools to create more equitable and sustainable energy systems, and applying optimization and decision analysis tools to determine paths for increasing a person's quality of life. In one line of research she evaluates the sustainability and reliability of the electricity grids in different energy systems. In general her team of post-docs, PhD students, and undergraduate researchers uses system models to determine ways we can use energy planning as a tool for increasing social welfare, promoting social justice, and eliminate poverty. 

To date Dr. Nock has worked with Google, Breakthrough Energy Ventures, the national labs, and a host of international researchers to promote energy justice, sustainability, and equity as nations move towards decarbonizing their electricity and transportation systems. 

Dr. Nock earned a PhD in Industrial Engineering and Operations Research from the University of Massachusetts Amherst. During her time at UMass she was an NSF Graduate Research Fellow, and an Offshore Wind Energy IGERT Fellow. Prior to this, she was a Mitchell Fellow in Northern Ireland where she earned a MSc in Leadership for Sustainable Development at Queens University of Belfast.

She hold two B.S. degrees from North Carolina A&T State University in Electrical Engineering and Applied Mathematics. In addition, she has volunteered in Malawi, held internships at Argonne National Lab, the Utility Regulator of Northern Ireland, and Exxon Mobil.

des hardhat.jpg

This photo was taken during a trip to Denmark where Dr. Nock toured a wind turbine facility. 


Dr. Nock's research is based in energy justice, decision analysis, and energy modeling. In addition to her research, she leads and energy justice based start-up company, and offers consulting services to companies.



Decision Analysis

How does the information we present to stakeholders impact their decisions?

University of Massachusetts Amherst

PhD Industrial Engineering and Operations Research

Dissertation Title "Power System Planning in Disparate Energy Systems"

Energy Justice and Sustainability

How can we provide electricity to people in an equitable and sustainable way?

What new tools do we need to reduce energy poverty?

Applied Optimization

How can we use mathematics to develop solutions to today's most pressing problems like the need for access to sustainable electricity?

Queens University of Belfast

MSc Leadership for Sustainable Development

North Carolina A&T State University

BS Electrical Engineering and Applied Mathematics (dual-degree)

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