Peter Dizikes, MIT News Office

Knittel is the William Barton Rogers Professor of Energy Economics at the MIT Sloan School of Management, having joined MIT earlier this year. He is known for inventive, heavily empirical work largely focusing on energy and transportation, although he has studied electricity markets and corporate strategies as well.

Knittel’s research addresses a clutch of practical and linked questions: How much progress have automakers made on fuel efficiency? (More than you might think.) How do car owners respond when fuel prices rise? (They really do ditch their gas-guzzlers.) How large are the collateral health benefits of removing dirty vehicles from the nation’s fleet? (Very large.) 

All told, Knittel has produced concrete findings that he hopes will have an impact in the halls of Washington. “A lot of energy policies that we have are not the most efficient policies,” he says. “I want to inform policymakers what the true costs and benefits of certain policies are.”

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(March 2012)