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CANCELLED-Technology Planning & Decision Making in a Changing Business Environment
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When: December 11, 2019
See event details.
Where: MREA
11640 73rd Avenue N
Maple Grove, Minnesota  56369
United States
Contact: Karen Miller, Event & Membership Coordinator

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Technology Planning & Decision Making in a Changing Business Environment: The Imperatives for Cooperative Leadership

December 11, 2019 (Wed. 9-4pm)
MREA conference room, Maple Grove

You might also want to consider attending tomorrow's IT Users Group session, too! (Thur. Dec. 12, 9:30-3:30)

Who should attend
IT, engineering, customer service, finance and accounting, and CEO/GMs


An era of technology-driven business change is firmly underway across the electric utility industry. Electric cooperatives are deploying multiple technology systems, often several at a time. Many are also investing heavily in fiber broadband networks to retrieve a massive trove of newly available and highly granular data, and to exercise near-real-time control over electric system assets. Energy flows across the system have become increasingly dynamic as solar and wind resources begin to proliferate and disrupt the traditional power plant dispatch. These changes can present profound engineering, operational and financial challenges, including stranded investments.

Building or updating a cooperative’s technology plan can help address these challenges. The planning process creates instant value by enhancing organizational relationships and identifying the technologies with the highest overall priorities for investment. Risks associated with technology applications can be mitigated. However, none of this works without effective technology engagement and leadership. This full-day program will delve into what co-op leadership must do to insure successful technology adoption and business integration.

Program Agenda

- Changes underway in the electric utility operating environment
- Why technology planning is crucial
- Technology planning & decision making framework
- Technology investment and the budgeting process (group participation exercise)
- Making the business case for technology investment
- The question of broadband investment
- Exercising technology leadership

Education program members $289
Non-education program members/$344

About the Program Leader

Eric Cody is in a position to understand the technology challenges electric cooperatives face. He served as vice president of three subsidiaries of the New England Electric System (now known as National Grid USA) over more than a decade of his forty-year utility career. One of these officer roles was head of IT, managing a staff of more than 200. Eric has worked closely with NRECA and electric cooperatives across the United States for the past twenty years. He teaches NRECA’s course “Technology Planning, Decision Making and Leadership” and delivers workshops on strategic technology planning at TechAdvantage and to electric cooperatives and statewide cooperative associations. He writes extensively for NRECA, including the 2018-19 series of twenty case studies featuring electric cooperatives moving into broadband services. Eric has spoken at numerous conferences and forums, including NRECA’s annual CEO Close-up Conference. He holds a bachelor’s degree from Amherst College and a master’s degree in energy planning and policy analysis from Harvard University. He is a former Naval officer.

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