Join Kennedy School students as they share their experiences from their trip to the United Arab Emirates through the Emirates Leadership Initiative. Panelists will discuss key take-aways from the World Future Energy Summit, meetings with energy and environment policymakers, and cultural outings.

Featuring Wael Almazeedi, Chairman of Free Access to Energy (FATE) Consortium and trip advisor (also MC/MPA '98), Joelle Thomas (MPP '16) and Muhammed Y. Idris (MEI Research Fellow) on alternative energy policy, Frederic Rupprecht (MPP '16) and Sergio Torro (MC/MPA '15) on encountering Emirati culture.

Co-sponsored by the Center for Public Leadership

Panelist Bios:

Wael Almazeedi is a 1998 graduate of the Mid-Career Masters in Public Administration program at Harvard Kennedy School and an energy and infrastructure policy expert and entrepreneur, currently serving as CEO and co-founder of the Free Access to Energy (FATE) Consortium. With over 25 years of experience in energy policy, he has worked across the world to develop effective and cutting edge policy solutions to global energy challenges.

Joelle Thomas is pursuing a Masters in Public Policy at the Harvard Kennedy School with a focus in energy policy. Prior to HKS, Joelle worked in international development in the Middle East and North Africa, implementing projects in a range of areas, including energy and the environment.

Muhammed Y. Idris is a pre-doctoral researcher at the Belfer Center’s Middle East Initiative, where his research focuses on the political economy of the Middle East and North Africa. In particular, he has written on the efficacy of economic sanctions in destabilizing autocratic leaders and regimes, constituent representation in autocratic institutions, and the mediating effect of institutions on investor reactions to political instability in conventional and Islamic markets. A common thread running through his research is the application of computer-aided statistical analysis of English and Arabic texts to develop new and better measures of social phenomena. This includes developing software to machine code political instability at scale, and modeling political attention from legislative speech in MENA parliaments. In addition to appointment at HKS, Muhammed is also a visiting fellow with the data science group at the Harvard Institute for Quantitative Social Science, and a Ph.D. candidate at Pennsylvania State University.

Sergio Torrois a mid-career Master of Public Administration Candidate at the Harvard Kennedy School in the Mason Program. He works in Public Service in his native Chile.

Frederic Rupprecht is a Master in Public Policy Candidate at the Harvard Kennedy School  and a Haniel Fellow of the German National Academic Foundation. Prior to his enrollment at Harvard, he founded a social enterprise that provides an innovative and environmentally-friendly alternative in the consumer battery market.