Faculty

Benjamin F. Hobbs

Theodore M. and Kay W. Schad Professor of Environmental Management
Director, JHU Environment, Energy, Sustainability & Health Institute ( E²SHI )
e2shi.jhu.edu

Research Interests

environmental, energy, and water systems, economics

Benjamin F. Hobbs holds the Theodore M. and Kay W. Schad Chair of Environmental Management at the Johns Hopkins University.  Since 2010, he has been the inaugural Director of the JHU Environment, Energy, Sustainability & Health Institute.  He has been a member of the faculty of that university’s Department of Geography & Environmental Engineering since 1995, which he has also served as chairman. He also holds a joint appointment in the Department of Applied Mathematics & Statistics.  Dr. Hobbs earned his Ph.D. (Environmental Systems Engineering) in 1983 from Cornell University.

 

Previously, he was Economics Associate at Brookhaven National Laboratory, National Center for Analysis of Energy Systems (1977-1979). He later joined the Energy Division of Oak Ridge National Laboratory as a Wigner Fellow from 1982-1984.  Between 1984 and 1995, he was on the faculty of the departments of Systems Engineering and Civil Engineering at Case Western Reserve University.  While there, he was named a Presidential Young Investigator by NSF.

 

His research and teaching concerns the application of systems analysis and economics to electric utility regulation, planning, and operations, as well as environmental and water resources systems.   He has published three books and many papers on these topics.  His work has received best paper awards from several professional societies.

 

Dr. Hobbs has had visiting appointments at the Helsinki University of Technology, University of Washington, and ECN (Netherlands Energy Research Center).  In 2009-2010, he was an Overseas Fellow at Churchill College and a Senior Researcher at the Electricity Policy Research Group (EPRG) at the University of Cambridge.  He continues as a Research Associate of EPRG.

 

Dr. Hobbs is Chairman of the Market Surveillance Committee of the California Independent System Operator, which he has served as a member since 2001.  He is also on the Public Interest Committee of the Gas Technology Institute.   Dr. Hobbs is a Fellow of the IEEE and INFORMS.

Education
  • Ph.D. 1983, Cornell University
  • M.S. 1978, State University of New York, Syracuse
  • B.S. 1976, South Dakota State University
Experience
  • 2005 - Present:  Research Associate, Energy Policy Research Group, University of Cambridge
  • 2002 - Present:  Scientific Advisor, Energy Research Center of the Netherlands, Policy Studies Division
  • 2002 - Present:  Chairman, Market Surveillance Committee, California Independent System Operator
  • 2016 - 2017:  Visiting Associate,, Computing & Mathematical Sciences, California Institute of Technology
  • 2016 - 2016:  Visiting Scholar, University of Washington, Department of Electrical Engineering
Research Areas
  • Ecosystem management
  • Environmental and energy systems analysis and economics
  • Mathematical programming models of imperfect energy markets
  • Multiobjective and risk analysis
  • Stochastic electric power planning models
Awards
  • 2016:  2016 Runner-Up, Best Student Paper, Decision Analysis Society (INFORMS)
  • 2016:  2016 Runner-Up for the Decision Analysis Journal Special Recognition Award
  • 2014:  • 2013 Editor’s Choice Award, Water Resources Research
  • 2014:  • 2014 Best Publication Award Environment-Sustainability, INFORMS Section on Energy, Natural Resources, & Environment
  • 2014:  • 2014 Best Publication Award in Energy, INFORMS Section on Energy, Natural Resources, & Environment for the period 2010-2012
  • 2013:  • Guest Professor, School of Electrical Engineering, Southeast University, Nanjing
  • 2010:  Economic & Social Research Council/Social Science Research Council (UK) Collaborative Visiting Fellowship 2010
  • 2010:  Fellow - Institute for Operations Research & Management Science
  • 2010:  LaGrange Fellowship 2010 (Offered - but BH declined) - Progetto Lagrange - Fondazione CRT and Politecnico Torino - Italy
  • 2009:  Ecole Politechnique Federal Lausanne - Switzerland - Landolt Visiting Chair in Sustainability - 2009-2010 (offered but BH declined)
  • 2009:  Overseas Fellow - Churchill College - Cambridge - UK 2009-2010
  • 2007:  2007 Best Publication Award (Energy) - INFORMS Energy - Natural Resources - & Environment Area (for Harrington - Hobbs - et al. - Mathematical Programming Series B - 2005)
  • 2007:  Fellow - Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) - "for integration of economic and environmental concerns into power systems design and operation - " Class of 2007
  • 2006:  2006 Bright Idea Award" - New Jersey Policy Research Organization and Stillman School of Business at Seton Hall University (for R.P. O'Neill - P.M. Sotkiewicz - B.F. Hobbs et al. - European Journal of Operational Research - 2005)
  • 2006:  Certificate of Appreciation - National Academies (cited for outstanding service on the NRC Committee on the Effects of Changes in New Source Review programs for Stationary Sources of Air Pollutants) - July 28 - 2006.
  • 2006:  Significant Reviewer Citation - IEEE Power Engineering Society - March 2006
  • 2004:  Best Publication Award - Decision Analysis Society (INFORMS) - 2004 (for Anderson and Hobbs - "Using a Bayesian Approach to Quantify Scale Compatability Bias - " Management Science - 2002)
  • 2004:  Best Student Paper Award - Energy - Natural Resources & Environment Section - INFORMS Annual Conference - Denver - October 24-27 - 2004 (for Y. Chen and B.F. Hobbs - "An Oligopolistic Electricity Market Model with Tradable NOx Permits)
  • 2001:  Second Place (Honorable Mention) - INFORMS Decision Analysis Section - Student Paper Competition (for paper coauthored with advisee R. Anderson)
  • 1991:  Mortar Board - 1991 Outstanding Professor Award - Case Western Reserve University
  • 1991:  Nominated for John S. Diekhoff Award for Outstanding Graduate Teaching - Case Western Reserve University - March 1988 and March 1991.
  • 1990:  Outstanding Research Oriented Paper - American Society of Civil Engineers Water Resources Planning and Management Division (for Hobbs et al. - "Risk Analysis of Aquifer Contamination by Brine - " J. Water Resources Planning and Management (ASCE) - 1988)
  • 1989:  Institute Associate - National Regulatory Research Institute
  • 1987:  Ameritech Fellow - Center for Regional Issues - Case Western Reserve University
  • 1986:  Presidential Young Investigator - National Science Foundation
  • 1985:  ASCE Energy Division Nominee for the ASCE Walter L. Huber Civil Engineering Research Prize
  • 1982:  Wigner Fellow - Oak Ridge National Laboratory
  • 1978:  Sage Fellow (1979-80) and McMullen Fellow (1978-79) - Cornell University
  • 1975:  Rhodes Scholarship Nominee from South Dakota State University
Journal Articles
  • Prete, C. L., Hobbs, B. (2016).  A cooperative game theoretic analysis of incentives for microgrids in regulated electricity markets.  Applied Energy.  169.  524–541.
  • Bhagwat, P. C., de Vries, L. J., Hobbs, B. (2016).  Expert survey on capacity markets in the US: Lessons for the EU.  Utilities Policy.  38.  11–17.
  • Munoz, F. D., Hobbs, B., Watson, J. (2016).  New bounding and decomposition approaches for MILP investment problems: Multi-area transmission and generation planning under policy constraints.  European Journal of Operational Research.  248(3).  888–898.
  • Shayesteh, E., Hobbs, B., Soder, L., Amelin, M. (2015).  ATC-Based System Reduction for Planning Power Systems With Correlated Wind and Loads.  IEEE.
  • Krishnan, V., Ho, J., Hobbs, B., Liu, A. L., McCalley, J. D., Shahidehpour, M., Zheng, Q. P. (2015).  Co-optimization of electricity transmission and generation resources for planning and policy analysis: review of concepts and modeling approaches.  Energy Systems.  1–36.
  • Ozdemir, O., Munoz, F. D., Ho, J. L., Hobbs, B. (2015).  Economic analysis of transmission expansion planning with price-responsive demand and quadratic losses by successive LP.  IEEE.
  • Ding, Y., Kang, C., Wang, J., Chen, Y., Hobbs, B. (2015).  Foreword for the Special Section on Power System Planning and Operation Towards a Low-Carbon Economy.  Power Systems, IEEE Transactions on.  30(2).  1015–1016.
  • Chen, Y., Hobbs, B., Ellis, J., Crowley, C., Joutz, F. (2015).  Impacts of climate change on power sector NO x emissions: A long-run analysis of the US mid-atlantic region.  Energy Policy.  84.  11–21.
  • Munoz, F. D., Watson, J., Hobbs, B. (2015).  Optimizing your options: Extracting the full economic value of transmission when planning under uncertainty.  The Electricity Journal.  28(5).  26–38.
  • Prava, V. R., Clemen, R. T., Hobbs, B., Kenney, M. A. (2015).  Partition Dependence and Carryover Biases in Subjective Probability Assessment Surveys for Continuous Variables: Model-Based Estimation and Correction.  Decision Analysis.
  • Schiro, D. A., Hobbs, B., Pang, J. (2015).  Perfectly competitive capacity expansion games with risk-averse participants.  Computational Optimization and Applications.  1–29.
  • Shayesteh, E., Hobbs, B., Amelin, M. (2015).  Scenario reduction, network aggregation, and DC linearization: which simplifications matter most in market simulations?.
  • Deng, L., Hobbs, B., Renson, P. (2015).  What is the Cost of Negative Bidding by Wind? A Unit Commitment Analysis of Cost and Emissions.  Power Systems, IEEE Transactions on.  30(4).  1805–1814.
  • Wang, B., Hobbs, B. (2014).  A flexible ramping product: Can it help real-time dispatch markets approach the stochastic dispatch ideal?.  Electric Power Systems Research.  109.  128–140.
  • Munoz, F. D., Hobbs, B., Ho, J. L., Kasina, S. (2014).  An Engineering-Economic Approach to Transmission Planning Under Market and Regulatory Uncertainties: WECC Case Study.  Power Systems, IEEE Transactions on.  29(1).  307–317.
  • Chyong, C. K., Hobbs, B. (2014).  Strategic Eurasian natural gas market model for energy security and policy analysis: Formulation and application to South Stream.  Energy Economics.  44.  198–211.
  • De Jonghe, C., Hobbs, B., Belmans, R. (2014).  Value of price responsive load for wind integration in unit commitment.  Power Systems, IEEE Transactions on.  29(2).  675–685.
  • Evans, D. A., Hobbs, B., Oren, C., Palmer, K. L. (2008).  Modeling the effects of changes in new source review on national SO2 and NOx emissions from electricity-generating units..  Environmental science & technology.  42(2).  347-53.
  • Bell, M. L., Hobbs, B., Ellis, H. (2005).  Metrics matter: conflicting air quality rankings from different indices of air pollution..  Journal of the Air & Waste Management Association (1995).  55(1).  97-106.
  • Linville, C. D., Hobbs, B., Venkatesh, B. N. (2001).  Estimation of error and bias in Bayesian Monte Carlo decision analysis using the bootstrap..  Risk analysis : an official publication of the Society for Risk Analysis.  21(1).  63-74.
  • Anderson, R., Hobbs, B., Koonce, J. F., Locci, A. B. (2001).  Using decision analysis to choose phosphorus targets for Lake Erie..  Environmental management.  27(2).  235-52.
Conference Proceedings
  • Hobbs, B., Kasina, S., Xu, Q., Park, S. W., Ouyang, J., Ho, J. L., Donohoo-Vallett, P. E. (2016).  What is the Benefit of Including Uncertainty in Transmission Planning? A WECC Case Study.  System Sciences (HICSS), 2016 49th Hawaii International Conference on.  2364–2371.
  • "The Value of Better Transmission Planning Models: Adaptive & Proactive Planning", The Evolution of System Planning.  Wilmington, DE.  December 6, 2016
  • "The Value of Better Transmission Planning Models: Adaptive & Proactive Planning", Monthly Research Webinar.  Baltimore, MD.  December 1, 2016
  • Designing Power Markets to Support Optimal Decisions: How Can Our Models Contribute?.  Santa Monica, CA.  November 30, 2016
  • "Bi-level Network Planning with Generation-market Equilibria Subject to Inefficient Network Pricing", INFORMS National Meeting.  Nashville, TN.  2016
  • "Does Risk Aversion Affect Transmission and Generation Planning? A Western North America Case Study", INFORMS National Meeting.  Nashville, TN.  2016
  • "Flood Risk Management Using Artificial Avulsions In The Yellow River Delta", INFORMS National Meeting.  Nashville, TN.  2016
  • "he Value of Better Transmission Planning Models:Adaptive & Proactive Planning", INFORMS National Meeting.  Nashville, TN.  2016
  • "Non-cooperative Multi-regional Transmission Planning", INFORMS National Meeting.  Nashville, TN.  2016
  • "Optimizing Adaptive Stormwater Management With Green Infrastructure: A Case Study In Wingohocking Watershed, Philadelphia", INFORMS National Meeting.  2016
  • "Power System Planning In Fragile States: A Case Study Of South Sudan", INFORMS National Meeting.  Nashville, TN.  2016
  • Modeling Electricity Markets & Policy with Optimization: Why It's Important (and Fun!).  LA, CA.  November 29, 2016
  • Designing Power Markets to Support Optimal Decisions: How Can Our Models Contribute?.  Pasadena, CA.  November 28, 2016
  • Modeling Electricity Markets & Policy with Optimization: Why It's Important (and Fun!).  Pasadena, CA.  November 14, 2016
  • "Energy Sector Emissions Downscaling: Methods and Challenges", Trans-Atlantic Infraday Conference.  Washington, DC.  November 10, 2016
  • "In Search of Adaptive Strategy for Power System Expansion in Bangladesh through Robust Decision-Making Analysis", Trans-Atlantic Infraday Conference.  Washington, DC.  November 10, 2016
  • Cooptimization and Anticipative Planning Methods for Bulk Transmission and Resource Planning Under Long-Run Uncertainties.  Portland, OR.  October 24, 2016
  • Designing Power Markets to Support Optimal Decisions: How Can Our Models Contribute?.  Richland, WA.  October 20, 2016
  • "Integrating Renewable Electric Sources: Control & Planning Strategies: Smart Grids Research at JHU", Exelon Corp. Visit to JHU: Energy Research at JHU.  JHU.  October 14, 2016
  • Designing Power Markets to Support Optimal Decisions: How Can Our Models Contribute?.  Seattle, WA.  October 13, 2016
  • "Watershed-scale management for fine sediment loading: Balancing alternative restoration scenarios from bank stabilization to water retention", Annual Meeting GSA.  September 26, 2016
  • "Guidance from BNL, ORNL, JHU studies in actual multicriteria decision making situations", Grid Management Framework Stakeholder Advisory Group.  Golden, CO.  September 26, 2016
  • The Value of Better Transmission Planning Models: Adaptive & Proactive Planning.  Folsom, CA.  September 20, 2016
  • "Can Inefficient Capacity Market Designs Bias Renewable Investment?", ORCAS 2016.  Friday Harbor, WA.  September 7, 2016
  • "Bi-level Network Planning Model Considering Generation-market Equilibria Subject to Inefficient Network Pricing", IEEE PES General Meeting.  Boston, MA.  2016
  • "Market Design with Renewable Capacity", IEEE PES General Meeting.  B.  2016
  • "System Adequacy with Intermittent Resources: Capacity Value and Economic Distortions", IEEE PES General Meeting.  Boston, MA.  2016
  • "Integrating Renewable Electric Sources: Control & Planning Strategies: Smart Grids Research at JHU", Energy Research at JHU Overview for Toshiba America Research, Inc..  JHU.  July 25, 2016
  • "Briefing on regional resource adequacy initiative: Some Comments on Capacity Credit Calculations", General Session of the Market Surveillance Committee.  June 17, 2016
  • "The Value of Better Transmission Planning Models: Adaptive & Proactive Planning", CERTS Reliability & Markets Review.  Arlington, VA.  June 9, 2016
  • "Exploring Win-Win Strategies for Urban Stormwater Management: A Case Study in Philadelphia’s Combined Sewer Area", World Environmental & Water Resrouces COngress, Annual Meeting EWRI.  Sacramento, CA.  May 23, 2016
  • "Can Inefficient Capacity Market Designs Bias Renewable Investment?", Windfarms 2016.  Dallas, TX.  May 22, 2016
  • "It's Risky to Ignore Uncertainty! The Impact of Uncertainty in Energy Models", Clean Power Plan Workshop.  Phliadelphia, PA.  February 23, 2016
  • "Example of Optimization, BMP Choice for Nonpoint Source Control in the Minnesota Basin", Cracking the WIP: Designing an Optimization Engine to Guide Efficient Bay Implimentation.  Annapolis, MD.  February 17, 2016
  • "Tutorial on Optimization with EXCEL Solver(R)", Cracking the WIP: Designing an Optimization Engine to Guide Efficient Bay Implimentation.  Annapolis, MD.  February 17, 2016
  • "Quantifying Uncertainty in Decisions: Supporting Adaptive Management with Decision Analysis", Assessing Uncertainty in the Chesapeake Bay Program Modeling System.  Arlginton, VA.  February 1, 2016
  • "Annual Report: Cooptimization and Anticipative Planning Methods for Bulk Transmission and Resource Planning Under Long-Run Uncertainties", Annual Research Review.  Portland, OR.  2016
  • "The Value of Better Transmission Planning Models: Adaptive & Proactive Planning", Hawaii International Conference on Systems Science 49.  Kauai, Hawai.  2016
  • "Designing Power Markets to Support Optimal Decisions: How Can Our Models Contribute?", Optimization & Equilibrium in Energy Economics.  UCLA, Los Angeles, CA.  January 10, 2016
  • "Modeling Electricity Markets & Policy with Optimization: Why It's Important (and Fun!)", 3 Invited Lectures on Energy Modeling.  Beijing; Hong Kong; Hong Kong.  2015
  • "Lessons From Large Scale Stochastic Transmission Planning in WECC", EPRI Risk-Based Planning Workshop.  Little Rock, AR.  November 19, 2015
  • "Incentives Designing Power Markets to Support Optimal Decisions:How Can Our Models Contribute?", Workshop on Power Systems & Markets.  State College, PA.  November 19, 2015
  • "10 Presentations by students and myself; (1) Adaptive Stormwater Management with Green Infrastructure using Two-stage Stochastic Programming; (2) Decision Analysis for Sustainable Management of the Yellow River Delta; (3) ENRE Best Publication Award 2015 in Energy; (4) Lessons from Large Scale Transmission Planning using Stochastic Programming in WECC; (5) Operational Flexibility in Dutch Electricity Markets; (6) Proactive Transmission Planning: A Case Study of the Eastern Interconnection; (7) Risk-averse Transmission and Generation Planning: A WECC Case Study; (8) The Benefits of Sharing Reserves Between Countries: A Case Study of the European Electricity System; (9) The Economic Effects of Interregional Trading of Renewable Energy Certificates in the WECC; (10) Unit Commitment Approximations in Generation and Transmission Planning: Efficiency & Accuracy", 9 Presentations at Institute for Operations Research and Management Science Annual Meeting.  Philadelphia.  November 1, 2015
  • "Market capacity definitions and generation adequacy ", Transatlantic Infraday Conference.  FERC, Washington, DC.  October 30, 2015
  • "Electric Capacity Market Performance with Generation Investment and Renewables", The Dynamic Energy Landscape, 33rd US Association of Energy Economists Annual North American Conference .  Pittsburgh, PA.  October 25, 2015
  • "Simulating Risk of Flooding & Avulsion in the Lower Huanghe: Using a Reservoir Routing and Two-Channel Hydraulic & Bed Aggradation Model", Huanghe River Workshop.  Zhengzhou, China.  October 10, 2015
  • "Planning accounting for long-run uncertainties: Long-run transmission optimization applications in the western US", EPRI Power Delivery & Utilization Program Advisory & Sector Council Meeting.  Baltimore.  October 7, 2015
  • "Tax Bads not Goods: How Pricing Carbon Might Work", JHU Summit on Climate Change & Health.  SPH.  October 2, 2015
  • "Transmission Investment Assessment Under Uncertainty", CERTS Annual Review.  Ithaca, NY.  August 4, 2015
  • "Large-Scale Stochastic Programming to Cooptimize Networks and Generation in the Face of Long-Run Uncertainties: What Lines Should We Build Now?", 2 Invited Lectures.  Madrid Spain; Vancouver, BC (via Webinar).  2015
  • "Co-optimization of Transmission and Other Resources: A Case Study of the Eastern Interconnection ", IEEE Power & Energy Society General Meeting.  Denver, CO.  July 26, 2015
  • "Flexibility in Dutch Electricity Markets", IEEE Power & Energy Society General Meeting.  Denver, CO.  July 26, 2015
  • "Planning accounting for generation siting response & long-run uncertainties: Long-run transmission optimization applications in the western and eastern US", IEEE Power & Energy Society General Meeting.  Denver, CO.  July 26, 2015
  • "Real-Time Flexible Ramping Markets Compared with Stochastic Unit Commitment", IEEE Power & Energy Society General Meeting.  Denver, CO.  July 26, 2015
  • "Stochastic Transmission Planning and Generation Cooptimization: How Important is Stochasticity Compared to Other Approximations?", IEEE Power & Energy Society General Meeting.  Denver, CO.  July 26, 2015
  • "What Questions Might (Micro)Economists Ask About Electricity?, Super Session Presentation", IEEE Power & Energy Society General Meeting.  Denver, CO.  July 26, 2015
  • "Multi-Stage Generation and Transmission Co-Planning under Uncertainty: What Lines Should We Build Now? ", 22nd International Symposium on Mathematical Programming 2015.  Pittsburgh.  July 12, 2015
  • "Flexible Ramping Product: Definition & Performance", Workshop on the Remuneration of Generation Units Under Scarcity Conditions.  Brussels.  July 10, 2015
  • "Integrated Analyses of Demand Response, Wind Variability, and Markets", Windfarms 2015: WindInsPIRE Annual Workshop.  Leuven, Belgium.  July 8, 2015
  • "Which Oversimplification is the Worst Sin? Lessons from Large Scale Transmission Planning Using Stochastic Programming in the US and EU", WHOLESem 2nd Annual Conference, 'Hybrid Energy Modelling – Linkages and Interdisciplinarity'.  Murray Edwards College, Cambridge University, UK.  July 6, 2015
  • "Comments on Markets & Distributed Energy Resources in the US", Distributed Energy Systems (DES) and the future of electricity systems regulation: new markets and networks regulatory design to deal efficiently with the new agents.  Madrid.  July 2, 2015
  • "Large-Scale Stochastic Programming to Cooptimize Networks and Generation in the Face of Long-Run Uncertainties: What Lines Should We Build Now? ", Increasing Market & Planning Efficiency through Improved Software.  Washington, DC.  June 22, 2015
  • "Quantifying Benefits of Green Stormwater Infrastructure in Philadelphia", World Environment & Water Congress.  Austin, TX.  May 17, 2015
  • "3 Talks: Stochastic Cooptimization Planning; Cooptimization of Storage & Demand Management; Cooptimization Of Transmission & Other Resources: Why & How", 3 Presentations at 15th Annual Utility Integrated Resource Planning (IRP) Conference.  Atlanta, GA.  May 13, 2015
  • "Planning for Uncertainty Project: Results & Preliminary Conclusions", Transmission Expansion Planning Policy Committee.  Salt Lake City, UT.  May 7, 2015
  • "Using Optimization to Guide Implementation Planning: From What If to What’s Best", Water Quality Goal Implementation Team.  Annapolis.  April 13, 2015
  • "Using Optimization to Guide Implementation Planning", The 27th Annual Environment Virginia Symposium.  Virginia Military Institute.  April 5, 2015
  • "Market Design at the CAISO:Challenge & Response", Invited Lecture.  Hong Kong.  March 19, 2015
  • "Experiences from the Mississippi River and Application to the Huanghe and other large, global rivers", Invited Lecture.  Shanghai, China.  March 17, 2015
  • "Overview of Systems Analysis for Decisions: Optimization & Decision Analysis", Invited Lecture.  Shanghai, China.  March 17, 2015
  • "How Can We Most Efficiently Use Our Limited Water, Sand, & $ ? Diversions to Build Land in the Mississippi Delta", Workshop on Huanghe River.  Tsinghua University, Beijing.  2015
  • 8 Invited Seminars.  2014
  • Nineteen presentations at scholarly meetings.  2014
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