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Mahmood Hasan: Recipient of the 2021 U.L.G. Rao Memorial Prize

Posted by Economics Department on June 29, 2021 in News

The U.L.G. Rao Memorial Prize in Economics is an annual award for the best MA or MDE thesis written in the past academic year. This year’s recipient is Mahmood Hasan, MA.  Mahmood’s thesis was entitled ‘Demand for Residential Solar Photovoltaic Systems: Evidence from Nova Scotia.’ Link here...

In their nomination letter Mahmood's thesis committee wrote:

As human activities continue to increase greenhouse gasses in the atmosphere, there is universal agreement that keeping global warming below 1.5°C will require major restructuring in the energy sector and ending its reliance on fossil fuels. Distributed electricity generation by residential solar photovoltaic (PV) systems (or solar panels) is widely recognized as part of the solution, with many jurisdictions, Nova Scotia included, providing financial incentives for the installation of such systems. However, there is considerable uncertainty about the demand for solar panels by residential customers. 

Mahmood's thesis estimates the demand for PV systems in Nova Scotia and provides the first systematic and transparent estimates of the determinants of this demand. He also provides an evaluation of the financial incentives available to households. His estimates indicate that while residential PV systems are still not completely price competitive, small-scale incentives have had a large impact on installations and they are a step in the right direction in meeting provincial targets for reducing greenhouse gas emissions from electricity generation. Mahmood's thesis addresses a significant environmental and economic problem using rigorous economic theory and the best econometric technique available.

Congratulations Mahmood!