Our efforts, in close collaboration with our partners, are making a difference in California and beyond. Our impact is wide and varied and includes:

  • Helping construct the nation’s first zero net energy community.
  • Developing, validating, and/or commercializing technologies and strategies that cut energy use.
  • Working with industries, businesses, and schools to improve energy efficiency.
  • Partnering with people from all corners of government and industry to change policy and bring new technologies to market.
  • Moving inexpensive and efficient energy technologies into the marketplace of developing countries.
  • Developing a strong undergraduate and graduate program to teach future thought leaders and managers.
  • Collaborating with key educational institutions to improve workforce development.


EEI alumni are energy leaders and experts in government, the private sector, and academia.

Energy Graduate Group Alumni

photo of Imby in the quad at West Village
  • 2021 Graduate
  • 2021 Graduate
  • Executive Director of Environmental, Renewable, and Sustainable Energy
  • Black Girls Do Engineer Los Angeles
Greg Chin
  • 2019 Graduate
    California Energy Commission
Jin Wook Ro
  • 2021 Graduate
  • UC Davis Policy Institute for Energy, Environment, and the Economy

UC Davis Alumni in Energy

Jon Cook
  • Senior Planning Analyst
    Salt River Project
Scott Crider
  • Senior Vice President of External and Operations Support
  • San Diego Gas & Electric
Marco Pritoni
  • Research Scientist
    Berkeley Energy & Climate Institute

If you are an alumna, please join our LinkedIn group and contact us to provide your most recent information.

Board of Advisors

Distinguished leaders in industry, government, public interest organizations, and academia serve on the EEI’s Board of Advisors. The Board meets once or twice a year with EEI’s Director, faculty leaders, researchers, staff, and students to provide valuable insight and advice on research opportunities, funding strategies, and outreach.
Ralph Cavanagh
  • Co-Director Energy Program/Senior Attorney
  • Natural Resources Defense Council
  • Vice President, Business Development & Customer Engagement
  • Pacific Gas and Electric Company
  • Vice President, Customer Services
  • San Diego Gas & Electric
Ryan Harty
  • Department Head, Connected and Environmental Business Development
  • American Honda Motor Company
Philip Hopkins
  • Managing Director, Head of Renewable Energy & Environmental Finance
  • Wells Fargo Commercial Capital
David Jacot
  • Director of Efficiency Solutions
  • Los Angeles Department of Water and Power
  • President
  • Panasonic Life Solutions Company of America
Jawaad Malik
  • Vice President, Strategy and Sustainability and Chief Environmental Officer
  • Southern California Gas Company
  • Chief Strategy Officer
  • Sacramento Municipal Utility District (SMUD)
Michael Peevey
  • President (retired)
  • California Public Utilities Commission
Nancy Pfund
  • Founding and Managing Partner
  • DBL Partners
  • Vice President, Customer Programs and Services
  • Southern California Edison
  • Vice President of Strategic Marketing, Advocacy & Applications Development
  • Daikin

Board Liaisons

Former Board of Advisors

View a list of our former Board of Advisors.


The Energy and Efficiency Institute’s central office and several of its research centers are located in UC Davis West Village—the nation’s largest planned zero net energy (ZNE) community. We are also co-located with the Institute of Transportation Studies.

West Village

West Village is a “living laboratory” where faculty and researchers can develop, test, and evaluate technologies.

EEI Smart Home

Honda, in collaboration with UC Davis and the EEI, built one of the most advanced, zero net energy smart homes. The home is located in West Village on the UC Davis campus and showcases energy efficient technology.

Research Center Laboratories

Each of the EEI’s primary research centers has laboratories for research and development, prototyping, and product testing.


The Institute builds on the success of the Energy Efficiency Center (EEC) and its roots in energy efficiency technology commercialization. The EEC was established in 2006 with a challenge grant from the California Clean Energy Fund. It was the first university-based energy efficiency center in the United States. Since its inception, it has built a strong program through its four affiliated research centers: the California Lighting Technology Center, the Western Cooling Efficiency Center, the Center for Water–Energy Efficiency, and the Plug-in Hybrid & Electric Vehicle Research Center. It has also established robust global impact efforts, collaborators, and research and education initiatives.

The EEC has leveraged a VIP Board of Advisors and collaborative industry and agency partnerships to drive new solutions, guide the development of West Village at UC Davis–the first planned Zero Net Energy community in the country–and train thousands of students and energy professionals at UC Davis and beyond.

With the growth of the EEC and its transition to an institute, the development of a strong coalition of over 50 energy-related faculty from multiple disciplines, and prominent energy initiatives on campus, including the new energy graduate program, UC Davis has become a global leader in energy.

The Institute serves as a hub for the university’s energy-related efforts and is well positioned to continue its success in driving the development and commercialization of critical energy solutions in the Sacramento region, across California, the nation, and the world.

Mission & Guiding Principles


To accelerate the development and commercialization of sustainable energy technologies & solutions.

Guiding Principles

Energy efficiency is at the core of what we do.

  • The inspiration for our work comes from our roots as a land grant institution and the first university-based center in energy efficiency.
  • As is the case with the loading order in the State of California, energy efficiency is the first resource we look towards for achieving society’s energy (and related greenhouse gas emission reduction) goals.
  • We recognize that energy efficiency is a critical component within the broader energy system, which is in turn, a critical system within the broader network of societal infrastructure.

The evolving energy system needs integrated solutions.

  • We work at the nexus between energy and many fields, leveraging UC Davis’ substantial strengths in lighting, HVAC systems, buildings, water, agriculture and food-production, sustainable transportation, fuel cells & batteries, economics, life sciences, health and well-being, and human and community development.
  • Tackling the hardest problems requires leveraging the best resources. We connect the right expertise with key policy-makers, industry representatives, and stakeholders.
  • Working together, we analyze and use data, technologies, and policies to solve problems that cross systems, disciplines and scales.

Innovation matters most when it is adopted at scale.

  • Impact requires accounting for the perspectives and behaviors of all stakeholders who invest, deliver and benefit from energy services.
  • New solutions don’t have to be invented here — great ideas can come from academia or anywhere – our ultimate goal is to translate them into reality.
  • We strive to improve investment in and access to clean, affordable energy services and develop solutions that enhance the quality of life for all, in California and beyond.
  • Our campus facilities and operations can provide a living laboratory for the world.


Realizing change requires a comprehensive approach to education.

  • We view each project as a chance to provide experiential learning for our faculty, staff, and students.
  • The classroom extends beyond UC Davis’ walls. We seek ways to advance life-long learning (K-12, trades, leadership training, etc.) and to partner with sister educational institutions to leverage resources and reach audiences of all learning levels.
  • The Institute strives to export the best ideas California has to offer globally and import innovations from around the world.


The Energy and Efficiency Institute (EEI) at UC Davis is a leading university institution advancing impactful energy and energy efficiency solutions. We focus on addressing critical energy challenges and improving energy use through research, education, and engagement. The EEI is home to innovative research centers and programs in buildings, transportation, water, and agriculture & food production; has more than 50 affiliated faculty; and hosts an interdisciplinary graduate program in energy systems.