Syavash Kazemi is not one to take things for granted. He looks behind the scenes and contemplates how to create a more sustainable process for the everyday necessities of life. This passion has taken him around the world to study at the EIT InnoEnergy Master School. His thesis at Swedish-Norwegian start-up Tibber led to his current position as a Data Scientist there, where he studies the implementation of strategies to provide stability to the electric grid.
Maybe the question is, how could somebody not be interested in sustainable energy! If we reflect on it, everything that we do requires energy somehow – even down to our most basic need: water. It’s right there when we need it, yet we hardly think about the complexities behind the whole process of bringing potable water from its source to us. All these intricated processes are repeated everywhere we look, in everything we do and are interconnected with one another. As a society, we need to adapt these processes to make them sustainable – and as a consumer, play a more conscious and active part.
At the moment I want to work in the electricity sector. Ideally, developing solutions to increase the stability and reliability of the grid that may be at risk by the introduction of more renewables. Specifically, I find Demand Response quite interesting!
I think that one of the differentiating characteristics is the possibility to carry out every year in a different university – especially considering the prestige of the involved universities. We explored very different learning approaches and enjoyed two different cultures. These experiences were vital in shaping us as individuals and engineers.
The MSc Energy for Smart Cities curriculum is quite broad, covering not only mechanical and electrical aspects but also regulations and economics. It is not so deep in technicalities but gives a wider approach to the subjects. I already had the equivalent of a Master’s degree from my country, so instead of going deep again in one particular topic, I wanted to look at the broader picture of the energy sector.
One particular activity stands out for me, the Innovation Journey. It brings together all first-year students from the two universities, happening three weeks along the year in different locations (Barcelona, Antwerp, and Amsterdam). These weeks are filled with workshops and activities that push you out of your comfort zone, trying to solve real problems from actual companies. You can then choose to embark on the Entrepreneurship Journey, where you can propose an innovative idea for a start-up.
I believe that the InnoEnergy network is quite powerful. I feel confident that if I send a message to alumni they will reply with a helpful answer, just as I would. I have used the network for several purposes: from asking technical questions to asking for recommendations when applying for theses/jobs.
It has changed my personal and professional life at 180 degrees. Two and a half years ago, I was working in the Chilean industry with interesting possibilities to grow professionally, but with limited options for an international career. Today, I work on the other side of the world, in a truly innovative start-up and living in a beautiful city (Stockholm). I’m extremely grateful for where I am, my professional network, and the many new friends from all over the world.