Koben is a Manager in the electricity, buildings, and communities practices at the Rocky Mountain Institute. Koben primarily focuses on leading efforts to investigate balance of systems costs and identify solutions that will reduce PV installation costs in the short- and long-term. Koben has also worked on projects with the goal of developing a strategic vision for how to reduce energy and carbon emissions across sectors at the community-scale.
Koben brings to RMI a background in collaborative stakeholder engagement, statistical and quantitative analysis, and researching urban sustainability and energy policy. While managing the Center for Sustainable Infrastructure Systems, he focused on driving collaboration among 40 researchers nationwide in researching and implementing city sustainability measures. As Program Manager for Built Green, Koben was responsible for engaging public and private stakeholders to implement green building practices, including a study of financial premiums for green certified housing, working as a technical advisor on a residential zero energy demonstration project, and overseeing the certification of and data management for over 3,000 certified projects. While in graduate school at the University of Michigan, Koben focused on energy policy analysis and preparing for the impacts of climate change.
Select RMI Projects
- Solar Soft Costs – Koben has contributed and lead efforts to engage industry partners in collecting data, analyzing cost drivers, and identifying the best, near-term opportunities for cost reduction. A current project, the SIMPLE Balance of System (BoS) project, is a partnership between Rocky Mountain Institute (RMI) and Georgia Tech Research Institute (GTRI) to better understand the cost drivers of rooftop PV and identify opportunities for cost reduction.
- Community Emissions Reduction Roadmap – Koben was the primary lead and content contributor on the transportation analysis component of a comprehensive plan to achieve carbon neutrality at Arizona State University (ASU). ASU partnered with Ameresco Inc. and Rocky Mountain Institute to craft an implementation plan for campus climate neutrality by 2025 and transportation neutrality by 2035.
- Master of Public Policy, Ford School of Public Policy, University of Michigan, 2012
- Master of Urban Planning, Taubman College of Architecture and Urban Planning, University of Michigan, 2012
- Bachelor of Arts in Economics, University of Puget Sound, 2003
Selected Publications & Conference Papers
- Time is Money: Operational Efficiency and Opportunities to Cut Installation Time and Costs, CALSEIA Contractor-Day Workshop, Intersolar North America Conference 2014, July 8, 2014.
- Calhoun, K., Crofton, K., Goodman, J., McIntosh, R. Lessons From Australia: Reducing Solar PV Costs Through Installation Labor Efficiency, Rocky Mountain Institute, June 2014.
- Solar Friendly Communities: Reducing Soft Costs of Solar Projects, Solar Power Colorado Conference, COSEIA, February 26, 2014.
- Morris, J., Calhoun, K., Goodman, J., Seif, D. Reducing Solar PV Soft Costs: A Focus On Installation Labor, Rocky Mountain Institute, December 2013.
- Zborel, T., Holland, B., Thomas, G., Baker, L., Calhoun, K. and Ramaswami, A. (2012), Translating Research to Policy for Sustainable Cities. Journal of Industrial Ecology, 16: 786–788.
- Larsen, L., Rajkovich, N., Leighton, C., McCoy, K., Calhoun, K., Mallen, E., Bush, K., Enriquez, J., Pyke, C., McMahon, S. and Kwok, A. Green Building and Climate Resilience: Understanding Impacts and Preparing for Changing Conditions. University of Michigan; U.S. Green Building Council, 2011.