Advancing sustainable growth in the United States and China

Paulson Institute welcomes former United States Deputy Secretary of Energy Daniel Poneman as Distinguished Fellow


Chicago, IL—Daniel B. Poneman, who has just stepped down as United States Deputy Secretary of Energy after over five years of service from 2009 to 2014, has joined the Paulson Institute as a Distinguished Fellow.

Announcing Poneman’s appointment, Paulson Institute chairman Henry M. Paulson, Jr., said, “Dan has decades of experience working on energy, economic, and national security policies. He understands how the United States, China, and other leading energy consumers can mix policy and market mechanisms to promote economic growth that is also energy efficient. At the Energy Department, Dan became an important advocate for an array of clean energy technologies, which can play an important role in achieving more sustainable economic growth, both in developed and emerging nations. I am delighted that he is joining the Paulson Institute as a Distinguished Fellow and look forward to the many ways in which he will bring his experience and insights to bear on our energy-related work in China.”

Poneman said, “I am excited to be joining the Paulson Institute. Its emphasis on combining knowledge with action makes it a new kind of think tank. As the world’s second-largest economy and energy consumer, China’s energy-related choices have global implications. Innovative approaches to new technologies, the promotion of standards and best practices, and joint efforts to expand the use of market mechanisms offer great potential to help China achieve its goals of more energy-efficient, low-carbon growth. I look forward to working with Hank and the entire Paulson Institute team to help shape energy policies and practices in both China and the United States.”

Poneman will work with several Paulson Institute programs, beginning with two initiatives in November on sustainable urbanization and cross-border investment, respectively. In Beijing on November 10 and 11, he will join a meeting of CEOs focused on best practices in urban sustainability, as well as an Institute effort to improve building energy efficiency in China through a combination of policy, regulatory capacity, and market incentives. In Pittsburgh on November 17, he will participate in an event the Paulson Institute is co-sponsoring with the Pittsburgh Economic Club focused on opportunities and challenges for foreign investment in the US energy sector.

The Paulson Institute is an independent, nonpartisan center located at the University of Chicago. Established in 2011 by Henry M. Paulson, Jr., the 74th US Secretary of the Treasury and former chairman and CEO of Goldman Sachs, the Institute promotes sustainable economic growth and environmental protection in the United States and China. The Institute is committed to the principle that today’s most pressing economic and environmental challenges can be solved only if leading countries work in complementary ways.

About Daniel Poneman:

Former Deputy Secretary Daniel Poneman was nominated by President Obama to be Deputy Secretary of Energy on April 20, 2009, and was confirmed by the United States Senate one month later. At the Energy Department, Mr. Poneman also served as Chief Operating Officer and, between April 23, 2013, and May 21, 2013, as Acting Secretary of Energy. Mr. Poneman first joined the Department of Energy in 1989 as a White House Fellow. The next year he joined the National Security Council staff as Director of Defense Policy and Arms Control. From 1993 through 1996, Mr. Poneman served as Special Assistant to the President and Senior Director for Nonproliferation and Export Controls at the National Security Council. For eight years, Mr. Poneman served as a principal of The Scowcroft Group, providing strategic advice to corporations on a wide variety of international projects and transactions. For nine years, he practiced law in Washington, D.C., as an associate at Covington & Burling and a partner at Hogan & Hartson. Mr. Poneman received A.B. and J.D. degrees with honors from Harvard University and an M.Litt. in Politics from Oxford University. He has published widely on energy and national security issues and is the author of Nuclear Power in the Developing World and Argentina: Democracy on Trial. His third book, Going Critical: The First North Korean Nuclear Crisis (coauthored with Joel Wit and Robert Gallucci), received the 2005 Douglas Dillon Award for Distinguished Writing on American Diplomacy. Poneman is a senior fellow at the Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs at the Harvard Kennedy School and a member of the Council on Foreign Relations.