Pennsylvania Environmental Resource Consortium

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Member Series, Harrisburg University Event #6: Using the Latest Digital Innovations to Address Energy Poverty in Developing Countries

  • 19 Apr 2019
  • 11:30 AM - 1:00 PM
  • Harrisburg University, 326 Market St, Harrisburg, PA 17101

Harrisburg University of Science and Technology is hosting a series of six public lectures featuring thought leaders who will speak on a variety of topics related to climate disruption and sustainable development during the spring semester.

Event #6

Friday, April 19, 2019, 11:30AM-1:00PM, Room 1151 – Using the Latest Digital Innovations to Address Energy Poverty in Developing Countries – Festus Odubo, Ph.D., Public Utility/Energy Advisor/ Rate Case Review Specialist and Agency Representative, Commonwealth of Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission (PA PUC) and Amjad Umar, Ph.D., Professor and Director of the Management and eBusiness degree program and the Information Systems Engineering and Management (ISEM) programs, Harrisburg University; and Senior Advisor to the United Nations and a Fulbright Senior Specialist with the U.S. Council for International Exchange of Scholars

Dr. Odubo will present his work on the technical and economic/financial issues that impact the commercial viability and effectiveness of microgrid systems in Nigeria. He also will discuss the viability of existing and future microgrid projects in the country, including practical steps that the Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission, developers, and other stakeholders can take to improve the climate for investment and development of mini-grids.  Dr. Umar will present a model which displays how the latest digital innovations and computer-aided planning can be deployed to address the issues and foster a bottom-up, community-based approach to addressing energy policy and sustainable development in developing and least developed countries.

Festus Odubo, PhD is a professional and a specialist with over 15 years experience in energy, environmental, water and wastewater issues including oil and gas and homeland security. Dr. Odubo is a subject matter expert in energy, environmental policies, water and wastewater regulation, especially in areas of compliance with local, state, and federal requirements and the review of applications and security plans (physical, cyber, emergency response and business continuity). He also has experience in the oil and gas sector having worked in the Production and Drilling sectors of ChevronTexaco and Schlumberger Oilfield Services, respectively.

Dr. Odubo has a PhD in Public Policy and Administration with a concentration in Homeland Security Policy & Coordination. He also holds a Master of Science degree in Environmental Pollution & Control and a Bachelor of Science degree in Industrial Safety Environmental Engineering Technology.

Dr. Odubo is currently employed as a Public Utility/Energy Advisor/ Rate Case Review Specialist and is also an Agency Representative in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania’s Public Utility Commission (PA PUC). He is a member of the National Association of Regulatory Utility Commissioners’ (NARUC) Staff Subcommittee on Critical Infrastructure, NARUC Staff Subcommittee on Water, Cyber Security Task Force of the PA PUC, PA Regional Counter-Terrorism Task Force, International Association of Emergency Managers, Pennsylvania Exercise Planning Team, Security Emergency Preparedness Committee, Engineers Society of Pennsylvania, Pennsylvania Emergency Management Council, the American Society for Public Administration, Golden Key International Honor Society, and Pi Alpha Alpha.

Dr. Amjad Umar

Dr. Amjad Umar is the Director and Professor of ISEM (Information Systems Engineering and Management) program at Harrisburg University of Science and Technology, and an Adjunct Professor of Systems & Telecommunications at the University of Pennsylvania. He is also Chief Architect of the United Nations Partnership on Small Islands and a Fulbright Senior Specialist on ICT. At HU, Dr. Umar teaches graduate level courses in strategic planning of digital enterprises, enterprise architecture and integration of smart enterprises, information security, and strategic intelligence. He also supervises graduate research and practical projects in ICT4D – his main area of interest.

As Chief Architect of the United Nations ICT4SIDS (ICT for Small Island & Developing States) Partnership, he is currently focusing on smart hubs and smart towns for the Small Island & Developing States. Due to his assignments with three UN initiatives as Chief Architect and Initiative Director since 2007, he has worked with more than 30 developing countries. Dr. Umar has 20+ years of experience that includes senior management and consulting/advisory positions with governments and industries around the globe. As a Director of Research at Bellcore (part of the Bell Labs system) for 10 years, he supervised large-scale projects in IT planning, enterprise architectures and integration, mobile computing, information security, and collaborative systems.

Dr. Umar is also the Founder/CEO of a startup that specializes in Computer Aided Planning of ICT-based Systems for the underserved populations. He has consulted with global telecom organizations, US Department of Navy, US Army Research Labs, Frost and Sullivan (England), Toyota Corp., Society of Manufacturing Engineers, healthcare organizations, professional services organizations, and academic institutions in England, Singapore, China, Italy, New Zealand, South Africa, Argentina, Canada and more than 30 developing countries. He has written eight books and more than 60 research papers in his areas of specialization. RSVP online to

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