About Lynne Kiesling

Lynne Kiesling is a Distinguished Senior Lecturer in the Department of Economics at Northwestern University. At Northwestern she is also a Faculty Member in the Northwestern Institute on Complex Systems (NICO) and a Faculty Affiliate in the Center for the Study of Industrial Organization (CSIO). Lynne is the author or co-author of many academic journal articles, book chapters, policy studies, and public interest comments, most of which analyze electricity policy and market design issues relating to regulation and technological change. Her publications include Deregulation, Innovation, and Market Liberalization: Electricity Regulation in a Continually Evolving Environment (Routledge, 2008). Her specialization is industrial organization, regulatory policy and market design in the electricity industry. In particular, she examines the interaction of market design and innovation in the development of retail markets, products and services and the economics of “smart grid” technologies. These digital communication technologies create opportunities for market development and product differentiation, and one of the dimensions of product development and innovation is the environmental impact of electricity generation and consumption. Lynne’s research explores the lack of retail price transparency under traditional economic regulation, and the extent to which retail markets that allow rivalrous competition can lead to the development of products and services that enable consumers to control and manage their own electricity use on several dimensions, including environmental impact. Devices and appliances with digital intelligence allow consumers to connect their electricity consumption decisions with environmental impact more directly, and they also allow for the communication of price signals directly to consumers and the autonomous response of those devices to price signals, based on settings that reflect the individual preferences of consumers. In this sense transactive smart grid technologies are enabling the development of an increasingly dynamic complex adaptive system due to the coordinated, and often autonomous, responses of heterogeneous individual producers and consumers.

She also teaches undergraduate courses in principles of economics, energy economics, environmental economics, and history of economic thought, and she writes about economics as the editor/owner at the website Knowledge Problem.

As a noted expert in smart grid economics, dynamic pricing, end-use technology, and retail competition, Lynne has been asked to speak to various academic, industrial, and regulatory groups about regulatory policy, institutional change, and experimental economic analysis of electric power market design. She has served as a peer reviewer for the U.S. Department of Energy and the National Science Foundation, and for academic journals including Energy Journal, Public Choice, and Review of Economics and Statistics. She has provided expert testimony in proceedings before the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, the California Public Utilities Commission, the Illinois Commerce Commission, and the New York Public Service Commission. She has also taught several economics workshops for regulators using experimental economics.

Lynne also served (2005-2010) as a member (and is currently an emerita member) of the GridWise Architecture Council, a group of 13 experts volunteering their time to articulate the guiding principles for an intelligent, transactive, energy system of the future, and to guide and promote measures to transform the nation’s electricity system into a more reliable, affordable, secure network in which users collaborate with suppliers in an information- and value-rich market environment.

Lynne has a Ph.D. in Economics from Northwestern University and a B.S. in Economics from Miami University, Oxford, Ohio. Her previous appointments include Assistant Professor, College of William and Mary, Manager, Price Waterhouse/PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP, Director of Economic Policy, Reason Foundation, and Research Scholar, Interdisciplinary Center for Economic Science at George Mason University.