6:30 pm: doors open
7-8 pm: Talk and Q&A
More than 600 million people in Sub-Saharan Africa have no access to electricity. In the absence of this energy source, people use kerosene and wood for lighting and cooking, which are dangerous, dirty, and dim. Fenix International provides solar home systems on a Pay-As-You-Go model, allowing customers to purchase a system on loan and repay as their finances allow. Once the system is fully paid off, the customer owns the system outright and all energy produced is theirs for free. Working in this space provides really interesting opportunities for a data science team, from predicting system malfunction remotely, to understanding customer repayment behaviors, to optimizing delivery routes over rough and unreliable terrain. In this talk, Brianna Schuyler, a data scientist at Fenix International, will discuss some of these issues and the methods that we as a team have employed to solve them.
About the speaker:
Brianna is a data scientist at Fenix International. She's based in San Francisco but works with a team spanning multiple countries, including Uganda, Zambia, and Ivory Coast. She and the data team at Fenix work on a wide range of problems to help provide clean, safe, and sustainable energy to people living off the grid in Sub-Saharan Africa. She has a bachelor's degree in Physics from Johns Hopkins University, a master's degree in Physics from the University of Wisconsin - Madison, and a Ph.D. in Neuroscience from the University of Wisconsin - Madison. After years of particle physics and functional MRI analyses, she took a break from academia and served as a Peace Corps volunteer in Northern Uganda. She's delighted to be able to work Fenix, the perfect crossroads of big data, sustainable energy, and energy access for underserved populations.