Rebekah Shirley is ERG alumni and former Post-Doctoral Researcher at RAEL. She completed her doctoral studies in the Energy and Resources Group in 2015. She also previously obtained a MSc. Energy and Resources (2011) and a MSc. Civil Engineering at UC Berkeley (2011). Her doctoral research focused on decentralized renewable energy technologies and designing integrated modeling frameworks to support energy planning in emerging economies, with a focus on Southeast Asia and island regions and now her scope has extended to sub-Saharan Africa, where she lives.
As a researcher at RAEL Rebekah has conducted feasibility studies for energy alternatives in Borneo and Laos, built the first carbon emissions and green jobs impact calculators in the Caribbean, developed solutions to reduce the carbon and water footprints of the hotel sector in India, designed carbon neutral emergency housing for hurricane preparedness and climate resilience in French Polynesia, explored the agriculture-water intersection with Fulbright Nexus Scholars in Nicaragua, and modeled least-cost power systems for partners across Latin America, Southeast Asia and the Pacific. She has worked with institutions like the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL), the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) and USAID. Rebekah is a University of California Chancellor’s Fellow and at UC Berkeley has won grants from organizations such as the DOE and the Rainforest Foundation that support her work.
Rebekah is now the Chief Research Officer at Power For All, a global education and advocacy initiative founded by energy access practitioners to advance renewable solutions for universal energy access, with focused campaigns in sub-Saharan Africa. For her work in building the continent’s first decentralized energy research engine Rebekah was named Africa’s Outstanding Young Leader in Energy 2018. Rebekah now lives and works in Nairobi, Kenya.