The Energy Policy Institute at the University of Chicago (EPIC) and the University of Chinese Academy of Sciences (UCAS) are proud to announce the first research grants from the EPIC-UCAS Joint Center for Energy Policy Research in China. Formed in January 2019, the EPIC-UCAS Joint Center supports the development of research-based insights on key energy and environmental issues in China.

The six awards from the Joint Center’s first call for proposals will directly support new research on a wide range of issues, from policies to incentivize the scaling of renewable energy and the environmental and economic effects of an air pollution alert system to the economic and environmental benefits of heating price reform.

“We’re thrilled to turn our collaboration with UCAS into concrete projects that promise to deliver insights into and solutions for some of China’s most important energy and environmental questions,” says Michael Greenstone, the Milton Friedman Distinguished Service Professor in Economics and director of EPIC. “The research projects we are initiating today will combine data-driven, high-quality economics research from University of Chicago faculty with the world-class innovative engineering expertise those at UCAS can provide.”

Of the projects, Choon Fong Shih, the senior advisor to the president of UCAS, says, “In working together on this rich portfolio of research, we will combine the prominent engineering expertise of UCAS with the University of Chicago’s global leadership in economic analysis. In melding these two perspectives, we will have the ability to produce cutting-edge solutions that could never be discovered individually.”

The six research awards will go to:

Yanfen WANG (UCAS); Xi LU (Tsinghua University); Choon Fong SHIH (UCAS) to study clean energy alternatives in the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau;

Kevin Mo (UChicago), Xing Huang (UChicago), Choon Fong Shih (UCAS) to study incentive policies to scale renewable energy;

Fiona Burlig (UChicago), Michael Greenstone (UChicago), Guojun He (UChicago/HKUST Hong Kong University of Science and Technology [HKUST]), Koichiro Ito (UChicago), Shaoda Wang (UChicago), Zifa Wang (UCAS) to study the effects of the Air Pollution Alert System;

Michael Greenstone (UChicago), Guojun He (UChicago/HKUST), and Shaoda Wang (UChicago) to study double-random inspections and their impacts on emission abatement costs;

Michael Greenstone (UChicago), Guojun He (UChicago/HKUST), Shaoda Wang (UChicago), Zifa Wang (UCAS) to study the effect of improved monitoring data on firm production and emission outcomes; and

Koichiro Ito (UChicago) and Shuang Zhang (University of Colorado-Boulder) to study the economic and environmental benefits of heating price reform in China.