Women in solar energy
Tuesday, 31. October 2023
12:00 to 1:30pm
The Workshop duration is 1:30 hours.

Women in solar energy

Gender diversity drives innovation, opens new pathways for technology deployment, brings valuable perspectives to social and economic development and provides a richer pool of talent for key and emerging industries. In the landscape of global issues requiring strong leadership and a skilled workforce, few areas are as critical as the transition to a sustainable energy system. Yet, the energy sector continues to be male dominated.

In order to advance the role of women as agents of change in society and promote best practices within the sector, the forum aims to provide the stage for a dynamic dialogue on the challenges and barriers, the lessons learnt but most of all, the success stories of women leaders in the energy transition.


Dr. Gurleen Kaur - Moderator

Dr Gurleen Kaur is an engineer trained in liberal arts, and passionate about using technology to create impactful, affordable, clean energy solutions. Currently, Gurleen works as a reliability specialist for emerging PV technologies at TotalEnergies where she conducts reliability studies in harsh environments for Floating PV and AgriPV applications.

Gurleen is one of the SWC 2023 Theme Chairs for Innovative application of PV technologies and will give a short presentation on the topic.

Christine Lins

In May 2017, Christine Lins co-founded GWNET, the Global Women’s Network for the Energy Transition, which aims at empowering women in the sustainable energy sector.From July 2011 until April 2018, Christine was working as Executive Secretary of REN21, the Renewable Energy Policy Network of the 21st Century, headquartered at the United Nations Environment Programme in Paris/France. Between 2001 and 2011, Ms. Lins served as Secretary General of the European Renewable Energy Council in Brussels. Previously, she worked in a regional energy agency in Austria promoting energy efficiency and renewable energy sources.

Dr. Aline Kirsten

Aline Kirsten is an electrical engineer, has a doctor degree in photovoltaic energy and is a PosDoc researcher at the Photovoltaic Laboratory of the Federal University of Santa Catarina in Brazil, where she conducts R&D projects in PV solar plants inspections, green hydrogen, electric mobility and energy storage, including second-life batteries. She co-founded the Brazilian Network of Women in Solar Energy, is president of the Brazilian Solar Energy Association (ABENS), and represents Young ISES on the board of the International Society of Solar Energy (ISES).

Dr. Nancy Haegel

Nancy M. Haegel is a senior research advisor in the Materials, Chemical and Computational Sciences Directorate at NREL and Director of the National Center for Photovoltaics. Her research interests are in electronic materials and devices, with emphasis on transport characterization, high resistivity semiconductors and infrared imaging and detection. She has also led international efforts in promoting the role of PV in the future energy economy.

Haegel joined NREL in 2014, after 25 years in academia, with the last ten at the Naval Postgraduate School in Monterey California where she was a Distinguished Professor in the Physics Department. She received her BS degree in Metallurgical Engineering and Materials Science from the University of Notre Dame and a PhD in Materials Science from the University of California, Berkeley. She is the author or co-author of ~ 160 publications, a Fellow of APS, and has been a Fulbright Senior Scholar at Hebrew University in Jerusalem and a Humboldt Fellow at the Max Planck Institute for Extraterrestrial Physics in Garching, Germany.

Dr. Akanksha Chaurey

Dr. Akanksha Chaurey is an expert on renewable energy technologies and markets and has led several projects dealing with technology assessment, market analysis, development of business models, capacity building, etc. She has 35 years of experience in renewable energy sector with specialization in decentralised and distributed generation and has worked in more than 20 countries. Akanksha has led many programs focusing on rural electrification, off-grid energy solutions, sustainable development and related policy & regulatory aspects sponsored by The World Bank, Asian Development Bank, IRENA, DFID, UNEP, MNRE etc.

Akanksha completed her graduation in Physics from St. Stephens College, Delhi and then pursued her M.Sc. in Physics and M.Tech in Metallurgical Engineering from Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Kanpur, India. In 2011, she was awarded a Doctor of Philosophy degree by IIT Delhi. She has the lifetime membership of Solar Energy Society of India and has been serving several expert committees and task forces on solar energy and distributed generation. Akanksha has experience as Board director in for-profit and not-for profit organizations.

Dr. Rashi Gupta

Dr. Rashi Gupta embarked on a transformative journey with a revolutionary vision to reshape
the energy technology landscape, particularly in the realm of energy storage applications. A
pioneering force in the domain of Advanced Cell chemistry within the Lithium Storage
Batteries sector, she has emerged as an indomitable presence. Her voyage toward innovation
led her to conceptualize and produce the "World's Smartest Lithium Battery" right here in India,
a feat that earned her the endearing moniker 'Batterywali of India'. As the visionary
Founder and Managing Director of Vision Mechatronics Private Ltd, she
remains steadfast in her commitment to steer the vanguard of Renewable Energy, Robotics,
and Energy Storage technology.
Dr. Gupta has not only pioneered technological advancement but has also etched her name
prominently within India's Renewable Energy Sector. Recognized as Asia’s Most Influential
Woman in Renewable Energy (2020) and bestowed with the "Corporate Guru World Award
2021" for her outstanding contributions to SDG5 & SDG7, she is an unwavering advocate of
Gender Equality and Women Empowerment on a global scale. Her resolute dedication to
sustainable development, with a focal point on SDGs 5, 7, and 13, has earned her accolades
such as the "Global Women Leadership 2021" and her inclusion among the inaugural "First
50 Women in STEM by CII 2021".
Dr. Gupta's ascendancy continues to soar as she secures her place among the "Top 40 Global
Women Leaders in Energy Storage 2022". Her profound impact on the CleanTech arena has
been recognized with the prestigious "Visionary CleanTech Disruptor (Tony Seba
Distinction) Award 2022".
Her influence reverberates on an international scale as a Council Member of the Council of
Engineers on the Energy Transition (CEET), an esteemed Independent Advisory Council to
the United Nations Secretary-General. Dr. Gupta champions "Energy justice" and "Energy
equality" through pioneering initiatives like rural electrification, thereby ensuring equitable
access to clean and sustainable energy for rural schools in India. A standout example is the
transformation she has brought to a primary school in Katavaram, Andhra Pradesh.

Dr. Viktoria Martin

Dr. Viktoria Martin is Professor in Energy Technology at KTH Royal Institute of Technology in Stockholm, Sweden. A graduate from KTH (MSc in Chemical Engineering 1993) and the University of Florida (PhD in Mechanical Engineering 1998), she has pursued a career in international research collaborations within the ISES (part of Board of Directors), the International Energy Agency as well as the EU, providing insight into a variety of leading research and education arenas. Dr. Martin has over 30 years of experience in education, research, and entrepreneurship in the area of sustainable energy, renewable energy system integration, district energy systems, and thermal energy storage. She is the author/co-author of 100+ publications within her research area. Equally important to research is her work on high quality education within the field, where she has contributed as programme director of master education on national, and international level. Presently she teaches courses on Energy Systems for Sustainable Transition, Energy Systems Modelling and Optimization, and Methodologies of Research for Energy Transition.