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BPA on stage at international innovation conference; Oliver named fellow
8/30/2013 12:00 AM
The Portland International Conference on Management of Engineering and Technology bestowed its Fellow Award upon Chief Technology Officer Terry Oliver for his leadership in the technology management discipline. Oliver’s sons, Spencer (left) and Sujin (right) joined him at the PICMET ‘13 awards banquet in San Jose, Calif., July 30.
Members of Bonneville Power Administration’s Technology Innovation and Energy Efficiency teams recently attended PICMET ‘13, the
Portland International Center for Management of Engineering and Technology’s
conference for technology management July 28 to Aug. 1 in San Jose, Calif. This annual event sets the stage for technology management for decades to come with the world’s leading experts from academic institutions, industrial corporations and government agencies participate in various discussion sessions on best practices and new trends.
One highlight of the event was that the international PICMET membership honored BPA’s Chief Technology Innovation Officer Terry Oliver with its prestigious Fellows Award. This distinction recognizes outstanding contributions to the development and growth of the technology management discipline, with nominees selected from government bodies, private firms, and academic institutions throughout the world.
“I am grateful to receive this honor, and cognizant that I could not have possibly done so without the steadfast support from countless executives throughout Bonneville and my entire TI staff,” Oliver says.
Other notable Fellows award recipients include Dr. James Spohrer from IBM, Dr. Antonie de Klerk from University of Pretoria South Africa and Dr. Alan Porter from Georgia Tech.
Other members of the BPA team contributed to this influential conference. PICMET members showed their high regard for BPA’s technology management program by inviting agency representatives to share their experiences with roadmapping and technology transfer endeavors. James Hillegas-Elting and Judith Estep presented on BPA’s methods and best practices to identify, screen and assess emerging technologies and thereby help sustain reliable, safe, and cost-effective utility operations throughout the region. BPA staff also led various other session topics including a utility case study on institutionalizing innovation management and an in-depth discussion on technology transfer.
“It’s about filling the pipeline of energy efficient products and services,” says Hillegas-Elting, who manages BPA’s energy efficiency technology roadmapping effort. “And roadmapping is a tool that can pinpoint the R&D needs and industry drivers for the next five to 20 years.”
Technology roadmapping enables organizations to manage time and resource investments more effectively in response to increasing complexity and the accelerated pace of change. Estep, the project management officer for Technology Innovation, says technology roadmapping is a key element of BPA’s R&D strategy. “It helps us focus our research around promising technologies that can resolve business challenges and advance energy solutions in the Pacific Northwest.”
Ultimately, identifying and prioritizing technology research needs allows for a more rational allocation of limited funding and resources. It also provides a centralized reference document wherein researchers and entrepreneurs at national laboratories, universities and businesses can find utility technology needs clearly articulated.
BPA cannot achieve its goals without input and guidance from a wide array of contributors. The agency has, for many years, actively collaborated with regional utilities, stakeholders, and universities to apply industry best practices for technology research and development. Support from the Portland State University Engineering and Technology Management Department and the Washington State University Energy Program has been central, as have contributions from the Northwest Energy Efficiency Alliance, the Energy Trust of Oregon, and many others.
PICMET ‘13 is just one example of BPA sharing its expertise and research strategies to an international community, with the goal of opening the door to future collaborations within and beyond the region. For example, next month Hillegas-Elting is presenting the technology roadmapping processes at the
Oregon Best Fest
, the Northwest’s premier cleantech innovation conference to an audience of university researchers, entrepreneurs and industry leaders.
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