Teaching Philosophy

Over the past 25 years I have had the honour of travelling the world, meeting people who are trying to develop and finance different investments and holding workshops on a variety of subjects. People who have both taken my courses and tried to watch my videos have told me that the courses are a far more effective learning experience than either the videos or the website. The reason a course works better than a video or a webinar is because we can have a lot of discussion and I can adjust the course to specific concerns of the participants. This is why in the tradeoff between flexibility and structure, I choose to be flexible.

With the pandemic and the lock-down necessitating on-line courses, I was worried and even depressed about not being able to continue my courses (my concern came in large part because I learn so much from people who participate in the courses).  But now that I have now completed different digital courses, I am confident we can provide you with a positive learning experience. I have found that as long as I keep the number of participants to a reasonably low level; strongly encourage interruption, questions, suggestions and feedback; limit the time of sessions to about three hours; and, make sure that participants practice with hands-on work the courses can work quite well.  I will even go so far as to say that I believe the digital courses can be fun for participants.

Other than making the course sessions shorter, I have changed some other things with the courses given some feedback I have received. Given the shorter time of the courses, I will have an optional introductory session where we make introductions, and we discuss the structure of the course.  In this introductory session I will make sure you have the files and see how some of the basic files work so we don’t waste time on this stuff during the course. We will also discuss which person will share the screen for the different sessions. I will also let you have a look at other course recordings so you can get an idea of how things work.

One of the things I miss most about the course is understanding you criticisms and suggestions as the course moves on.  I also want to do everything I can to assure you will ask questions and interrupt me. To start the interactive process, I will send you a pre-course questionnaire and I will compare your responses with those of the other participants. I will also ask you for some feedback after the first or second session to make sure that things are working for you and I will let you make comments to my partner Dominik in case you want to say really mean things.

Examples of Pre-course Questions

I am very much looking forward to working with you during our renewable energy and economics course. If you could take a minute or two to answer a couple of questions, it will help structuring the priorities and examples for the course (I will also ask for you to introduce yourself to the class). 

I will send you a Zoom Link and files for the course in the next couple of days. During the course I encourage you to ask questions and any time; use the chat box a lot; and send emails with suggestions between the sessions and anything else to make the course interactive.

  • Can you let me know the technologies you are most interested in concentrated on – solar; battery storage; on-shore wind; off-shore wind; hydrogen or even geothermal and biomass.  If you are interested in all of the subjects and would like to see a contrast I am interested in this as well?