Nathan Williams Headshot

Nathan Williams

Assistant Professor
Department of Sustainability
Golisano Institute for Sustainability

585-475-5802
Office Location

Nathan Williams

Assistant Professor
Department of Sustainability
Golisano Institute for Sustainability

Bio

Dr. Nathan Williams is an Assistant Professor at the Golisano Institute for Sustainability at the Rochester Institute of Technology. His research focuses on African energy systems with a particular interest in the use of renewable and decentralized energy technologies to expand access to electricity. His work has applied various methods including techno-economic modeling, risk analysis and machine learning. More broadly, he is interested in how infrastructure systems in the Global South can be planned in an integrated and sustainable manner to support social and economic development in underserved communities.

Before coming to RIT, Dr. Williams was an Assistant Research Professor at Carnegie Mellon University and an instructor at the Carnegie Mellon University Africa campus in Kigali, Rwanda. He also spent several years developing large scale renewable energy projects in South Africa. His interest in energy and development was sparked while serving as a Peace Corps volunteer in an unelectrified rural community in Burkina Faso. He has a B.S. in Physics and Mathematics from Whitworth University, a M.Sc. in Physics from Nelson Mandela University and a Ph.D. in Engineering and Public Policy from Carnegie Mellon University.

585-475-5802

Areas of Expertise

Currently Teaching

ISUS-808
3 Credits
This class will explore how decisions are made when confronted with multiple, often conflicting, criteria or constraints. The focus will be on the following analytical methods: linear and stochastic programming, optimization, and Monte Carlo simulation. Case studies will focus on sustainability multi-criteria problems such as energy planning, sustainable development, resource management, and recycling. Students will apply methods learned to a project involving their dissertation research.
ISUS-807
1 - 9 Credits
Research in fulfillment of Sustainability Ph.D. dissertation or M.S. capstone requirements.
ISUS-890
1 - 9 Credits
Research fulfillment of Sustainability Ph.D. dissertation requirements.
ISUS-780
1 - 6 Credits
An independent project in sustainability serving as a capstone experience for students completing the non-thesis option. This course requires a formal proposal and a faculty sponsor.
ISUS-790
1 - 6 Credits
Independent research in sustainability leading to the completion of the MS thesis. This course requires a formal proposal and a faculty sponsor.
ISUS-877
0 Credits
The Research Internship is designed to enhance the educational experience of PhD students through full-time employment.
ISUS-791
0 Credits
MS or PhD students requiring additional time to complete their thesis
ISUS-706
3 Credits
The goal of this course is to introduce students to economic concepts and analysis pertaining to sustainable systems. This course offers a nontechnical introduction, but based on rigorous economic reasoning. Additionally, a thorough treatment of models relevant to each topic is provided. The over-arching goal is for students to gain an appreciation for the logic of economic reasoning while teaching economics as it pertains to sustainable systems.

In the News

Select Scholarship

Invited Article/Publication
Williams, Nathan, Samuel Booth, and Ian Baring-Gould. "Survey Use in Micro-grid Load Prediction, Project Development, and Operations." NREL Technical Report. (2019). Web.
Invited Keynote/Presentation
Williams, Nathan. "Panel Discussion: Making data available and usable: Collection, interoperability, openness." Data for Development: Using Data Analytics to Accelerate Energy Access. Duke University. Washington, DC. 4 Dec. 2019. Conference Presentation.