The ERC is an interdisciplinary public service, research, and special projects organization that works to improve energy efficiency and the environment. The ERC provides expertise in the areas of energy efficiency, distributed generation, utilities billing management, and biofuels and bioenergy. Originally created to be a “fast response” team of experts, the ERC currently provides technical assistance, sophisticated modeling capabilities, educational outreach, and program implementation across the public and private sectors. The ERC is committed to providing the most comprehensive and up-to-date solutions to the energy and environmental problems affecting institutional, industrial, residential, and commercial sectors. The ERC is staffed by a uniquely diverse and highly experienced group of professional engineers, economists, architects, computer scientists, educators, and public policy analysts.
The Energy Resources Center (ERC) located within the College of Engineering at the University of Illinois at Chicago (UIC) was founded in 1973 as an organization dedicated to energy efficiency and the environment. For over 40 years the ERC has served as an interdisciplinary organization working in the fields of public service, research, and special projects. Established by the Board of Trustees as an approved Illinois Board of Higher Education center, the ERC began their work under the direction of Dr. James Hartnet, Professor Emeritus, Department of Mechanical Engineering. Under Dr. Hartnet’s guidance the ERC conducted research in the area of energy, as well as creating a “fast response” team capable of extending technical expertise, advice, and professional assistance to various organizations. The ERC’s primary focus was energy policy and plan issues predominantly in Chicago and the state of Illinois. Under Dr. William Worek, former head of the Department of Mechanical and Industrial Engineering, the Center moved into the national field with a refined focus on technology and market transformation.
The scope of ERC’s work has steadily grown at pace with the UIC community at large. Today it boasts a staff of that is increasingly multidisciplinary and which reflects the multicultural community that UIC champions as an institution. Currently under the direction of Cliff Haefke (The University of Illinois at Chicago and Midwest Cogeneration Association), the ERC is comprised of hands-on engineers, economists, architects, computer scientists, database developers, and public policy analysts. This team of technical specialists work with clients in the areas of Energy Efficiency, Distributed Generation, Biofuels & Bioenergy, and Utility Billing Data Management. While these are the major pillars of ERC’s work, the center’s expertise have been called upon internationally by other educational institutions and governments to help give council on solving energy challenges of tomorrow.