Henrique Pombeiro

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What are you working on at the moment?

My project is about energy efficiency in buildings. On one hand I am trying to control air conditioners and elimination using intelligent algorithms. On the other hand I am studying consumer behaviour to see what triggers people to adopt more energy-efficient behaviours. I’m also involved in a start-up that develops energy-efficient solutions for households

What have been the main benefits of participating in the InnoEnergy PhD School?

The PhD School has really changed my point of view of energy, of the market, of the world, of life. The courses have given me a huge amount of knowledge and I have met so many people I really feel that that I am seeing the world with different eyes – that stays constant until the next course and then my perspective on everything increases even more.

What have you learned from the InnoEnergy PhD School’s programme?

I now understand what marketing is, as well as fast prototyping and design thinking – skills that I really think are important. I also learned a lot about energy policy around the world. I have been studying energy for quite a while and I have never had a single class about energy economics, so that course was really important.

Where will these skills take you in the future?

I doubt that I will develop a business on my own, but my topic complements the work of the start-up that I’m part of. I think that some of the work I’m doing will help me to develop the business, so after finishing my PhD, I will definitely go to work for the company full-time.

 Can you tell me more about your company?

We analyse consumer profiles and develop the best energy-efficient solutions for them. We have a beta version of our platform, which makes it much easier to speak to investors, and we have recently been funded, which is really nice. The next step is to test our concepts, the usability and our design interface – at this stage I’m really applying the concepts that I learned in the InnoEnergy PhD School.