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Powering the Energy Transition: A Tale of Two Hemispheres | Part I: Setting the Stage

On May 2nd, the GBSN for Energy Transition Impact Community held the first part of their virtual series, Powering the Energy Transition: A Tale of Two Hemispheres Part I: Setting the Stage. This virtual session was designed to convene perspectives through the lens of the global north and global south while exploring key elements of the energy transition journey. We invited practitioners and academia from around the world, and was joined by nearly 90 participants ranging from over 33 countries.

We’d like to give a special thanks to our Impact Community Leads, Gregory Bean, Director, Guitterez Energy Management Institution from Bauer College of Business at the University of Houston, Sarah Craig, Programme Manager Energy Transition, Rotterdam School of Management, Dr. Yashar Ghiassi-Farrokhfal, Associate Professor at the Department of Technology and Operations Management at Rotterdam School of Management, Lwazi Ngubevana, Director at the African Energy Leadership Centre (AELC), Wits Business School, and Maurice Radebe, Head and Director of Wits Business School, as well as our four panelists, NJ Ayuk, Burhan Koç, Dr. Ramanan Krishnamoorti, and fellow Lead, Lwazi Ngubevana. Their shared combination of expertise created a space for individuals with similar passions to set the stage for a thought provoking dialogue. Thank you for your time, commitment and enthusiasm.


  • NJ Ayuk

    Executive Chairman
    African Energy Chamber
  • Burhan Koç

    Executive Director of Business Development
    ENGIE North America
  • Dr. Ramanan Krishnamoorti

    Chief Energy Officer
    University of Houston
  • Lwazi Ngubevana

    African Energy Leadership Centre (AELC), the Wits Business School, University of the Witwatersrand
    South Africa

Watch the Recording

Session Synopsis

“Powering the Energy Transition: Part I: Seting the Stage”  featured guest speakers NJ Ayuk, Burhan Koç, Dr. Ramanan Krishnamoorti, and Lwazi Ngubevana moderated by Maurice Radebe.

Co-hosted by University of Houston, C.T. Bauer College of Business, Wits Business School, and Rotterdam School of Management, Erasmus University, The discussion explored the key elements of the energy transition journey through the global north and global south lens.

Maurice Radebe moderated an interactive and provocative dialogue with the four speakers, addressing questions like:

  • With less than 10% of global renewable energy investment reaching Africa, it is clear then that Africa has a long way to go before she can fully transition to a low carbon economy. What do you think the continent has to do, to reach both the goals of energy security and that of a low carbon economy?
  • The global north has often been accused of hypocrisy when it comes to the energy transition, by putting pressure on developing nations to move into renewables whilst they continue with fossil fuels. Do you think the fact that Europe for example continues to invest in gas infrastructure sends the right message to the rest of the world, that the transition is indeed a global climate imperative, not a political tool and simply used for more extraction form developing nations? 
  • Despite increased variable energy investment, bitter winters and the ongoing war in Ukraine and dwindling Russian gas supplies, the global north remains relatively unscathed in terms of energy security. Are there any key lessons that the south should be taking from this? 
  • When it comes to the energy transition, what do you think Africa’s competitive advantage is and what needs to be done to leverage this?

GBSN for Energy Transition Impact Community

The goal of the GBSN for Energy Transition impact community is to advance knowledge on the business-related challenges and opportunities of the transition to a global sustainable energy system in line with the energy-related themes of the UN Sustainable Development Goals. These include topics like:

  • Energy Access
  • Energy Security
  • Air Pollution
  • Adverse Effects and Ancillary Risks
  • Energy Efficiency
  • Financing

Next Steps for the Community

Join the GBSN for Energy Transition Impact Community as we convene a multi-part virtual series to explore key elements of the energy transition journey, through the lens of the global north and global south. Hear from leaders from academia and industry about the enduring challenges and emerging opportunities on topics ranging from, repurposing legacy assets, financing, regulation, technology, and the role of business schools in the development of related skills.

Julianna LaBelle

Member Engagement Coordinator | Impact Communities

Julianna graduated from George Mason University with her Bachelors in Communication, concentrating in interpersonal and organizational communication.

Julianna has 12 years of experience working on designing and executing events in the restaurant industry. With her degree in communications, she plans to combine both her communications and marketing skills with her events experience to support the planning and execution of GBSN’s flagship event, GBSN Beyond. Julianna is responsible for building and maintaining GBSN Impact Communities in addition to other member activities that facilitates engagement.

Prior to GBSN, Julianna worked at MedEvac Foundation International, an international development non-profit. Julianna aims to continue gaining experience in the non-profit world as she begins her career.

An avid lover of travel and culture, Julianna has traveled to 27 countries. She studied abroad in Milan, Italy where she studied media, fashion, and communication. Interacting with people of different cultures, ages and backgrounds is not new to her. Julianna looks forward to working with GBSN’s global community.