2020 FRI Public Utility Symposium

Financial Research Institute

The Financial Research Institute has transformed its in-person annual Pubic Utility Symposium to an exciting and informational four-part webinar series to explore the forces driving public utility regulatory policy redesign and innovation. This webinar series is structured around four primary driving forces: physical, market, technological, and legal. Speakers will identify the underlying trends within each of the driving forces. They will examine current practices in these areas, identify emerging new solutions, and offer thoughts regarding developments in the near-term future.   

This webinar also will feature two (separate) keynote addresses by NARUC President Brandon Presley, Commissioner of the Mississippi Public Service Commission, and by Joshua Broder, CEO of Tilson. 


SESSION I - The Physical Forces Driving Public Utility Policy Redesign and Innovation

Wednesday, October 14, Noon – 1:30 PM (Central)

This session will examine the physical forces driving public utility policy redesign and innovation. Speakers for this session will focus on the resiliency and sufficiency of utility infrastructure for the 21st century. Topics addressed in this panel include the ability of the infrastructure to respond to disruptions originating from a variety of factors, the challenges of physical and cybersecurity, the reliability and sufficiency of existing infrastructure relative to projected demand growth, and the impact of emerging technologies.


SESSION II -The Market Forces Driving Public Utility Policy Redesign and Innovation

Wednesday, October 21, Noon – 1:30 PM (Central)

Speakers on this panel will discuss state innovations in pricing, mergers and acquisitions, consumer sentiment, renewables, capital market access, and affordability. Panelists will discuss how market forces are shaping the cost structures that producers, state regulators, and consumers must face while trying to balance the need for adequate utility incentives with consumer affordability and access. Included in this discussion will be risk equitability, the role of regulators, and ratemaking that encourages, fosters, and incentivizes research and development.


SESSION III -The Technological Forces Driving Public Utility Policy Redesign and Innovation

Wednesday, October 28, Noon – 1:30 PM (Central)

Topics included in this discussion are smart technology, storage, cybersecurity, micro-grids and renewables. Speakers will not only address the promise of innovation, but the regulatory changes that are occurring or need to occur as a result of these technological forces.


SESSION IV - The Legal Forces Driving Public Utility Policy Redesign and Innovation

Wednesday, November 4, Noon – 1:30 PM (Central)

Topics included in this session are federal/state/city mandates, environmental, and regulatory legislative relations. Speakers will explore the tensions between federal and state regulation and the critical relationships between legislators and regulators. Panelists will also seek to identify “who leads” and where collaboration is most useful.


A complete list of program participants to follow. REGISTRATION BEGINS IN AUGUST.