Energy/Power Systems Lead

Oakland, California, United States Full-time

WattTime, a tech nonprofit startup and subsidiary of the nonprofit Rocky Mountain Institute, has a unique opening for a talented power systems engineer (or similar energy expert) who loves data. You will drive the continuous enhancement of our groundbreaking technology to detect and forecast emissions intensities of different power grids in real time, the foundation of Automated Emissions Reduction (AER).

Who we are

When you use electricity, what power plant created that energy? A coal plant? A solar farm? Until recently, there was no way to know. But WattTime, founded by UC Berkeley PhD researchers, has developed breakthrough proprietary software algorithms that can accurately detect where your power is coming from, when. Now our technology helps IoT devices automatically sync their power consumption to moments that cut emissions and reduce environmental impact. We can add this feature to anything that consumes or stores energy and has an Internet connection - billions of devices! The technology instantly reduces output at fossil fuel power plants and increases it at clean/renewable power plants, reducing emissions and helping accelerate the adoption of renewable energy.

AER is growing and now has a clear pathway to becoming a nearly universal option in IoT devices. We’re so fiercely committed to making this happen, we even incorporated as a nonprofit to protect that mission. Our team is small (you’d be employee #10) yet we already support influential users like Microsoft, Google, Harvard, MIT, and the governments of California and DC.

What you’ll do

You’ll serve as the power systems lead working closely with software engineers, database ninjas, and environmental economists. Your main charge will be to continuously iterate on our algorithms to detect marginal emission rates in real time. About half your work will involve adding additional factors like transmission and ramping constraints, mixing your general power grid background knowledge with our unique highly data-driven approach. The other half will involve conducting and integrating advanced research projects in emerging forms of emissions detection, from data mining to blockchain to thermal satellite imaging. 

Required skills

  • Graduate degree in a field relevant to power grids (e.g. power systems, electrical engineering, mechanical engineering, environmental economics) and/or predictive modeling (e.g. data science, statistics)
  • Experience with power grid analysis (e.g. power flow, electricity markets)
  • Experience with predictive modeling (e.g. machine learning, causal inference)
  • Proficient in at least one programming language for data analysis and modeling (e.g. Python, R)
  • Most importantly: You genuinely care about making the world a better place

Bonus points

  • PhD or 5+ years experience
  • General science geek excited to dive into a wide variety of fields with us
  • Familiar with control theory

What we offer

  • You will play a crucial role developing and influencing the direction of technology that will do the emissions equivalent of taking many millions of cars off the road.
  • Significant flexibility to grow in many different directions within the broader RMI network of nonprofits.
  • Compensation range is $75,000-$95,000 annually depending on experience.
  • Exceptional benefits package including medical, dental, vision, HSA, Flex accounts, disability, pro-deals for outdoor gear and more.
  • Flexible policies: flexible hours, work-from-home, unlimited vacation. Remote work and part-time potentially possible.
  • While we prefer local, we will consider a remote working option for the right person.

Our culture

We are practical, results-driven activists. We prototype rapidly, embrace change, and iterate. We believe nothing has more potential for world-changing impact, fast, than software. Yet we also never confuse growth with impact, and are all personally, fiercely committed to our mission. That makes us quietly radical in unexpected ways. Most startups have competitors; we have allies. We have many expert volunteers who help us punch way above our weight class. We consider respect non-negotiable; there are no jerks here. We distrust intuition and hierarchy, and trust in data and everyone’s voice being heard. We believe diversity is critical to success. People from groups underrepresented in the tech industry, including people of color, women, people with disabilities, veterans, and/or LGBT, are strongly welcomed.

How to apply

Please submit your resume through Please pay particular attention to the mission question, as mission fit is extremely important to us.

WattTime is an Equal Opportunity Employer (EOE) and does not discriminate on the basis of race, gender, disability, or sexual orientation or classification.

Apply for this opening at