center for partnerships & innovation

NARUC Center for Partnerships & Innovation

Our Mission

The NARUC Center for Partnerships & Innovation (CPI) builds relationships, develops resources, and delivers training to assist state commissions contending with complex current and emerging issues.

CPI is funded by cooperative agreements with the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) and the U.S. Department of Commerce’s National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST).

NARUC CPI conducts work across five key energy areas and many topics within each: generation; transmission; distribution; customers; and critical infrastructure preparedness, response, and resilience.

Contact Us

Thank you for visiting.

If you need assistance finding resources, additional information, or would like to discuss partnering opportunities, please contact Taylor Fitzgerald.

CPI Home
CPI Publications

Search through the selection of publications developed by the Center for Partnerships & Innovation.

CPI Events
Energy Generation

Energy Generation

The energy generation mix is swiftly changing as consumers use energy in novel ways and new technologies become increasingly competitive with conventional resources. State utility regulators are charged with maintaining a safe, affordable, and reliable energy system while considering innovations and customer desires for a cleaner, flexible, and more resilient grid. As the energy portfolio changes, state regulators are also key stakeholders in efforts to support communities that have historically hosted energy production infrastructure. NARUC CPI provides members with timely and relevant resources to enhance their knowledge of energy generation investment options via site visits to generation infrastructure and R&D facilities, briefing papers, virtual and in-person exchange opportunities, access to technical experts, and more. These efforts are closely coordinated with the NARUC Gas Committee, Electricity Committee, Subcommittee on Nuclear Issues and Waste Management, and Subcommittee on Coal and Carbon Management.

Energy Transmission

Energy Transmission

The bulk transmission system transports high-voltage electricity from generation centers across long distances to distribution systems. State utility commissions and federal energy regulators are tasked with addressing complex issues around how to plan and pay for new transmission development and transmission system upgrades. NARUC supports members in collaborating with subject matter experts, impacted stakeholders, and federal regulators to identify barriers and opportunities for transmission expansion, facilitate transmission-distribution coordination, learn about transmission-related technologies, and address related bulk power system issues. Since 2022, NARUC members have also participated in the Joint Federal State Task Force on Electric Transmission.

Energy Distribution

Energy Distribution

The distribution system is the interface between the bulk power system and most electricity customers. Public utility commissions regulate the investor-owned utilities that operate the distribution grid (whether in restructured or vertically-integrated states) in order to ensure safe, reliable, affordable, and non-discriminatory provision of services. They define the economic relationship between customers and the distribution system as well as the rules and requirements for physical interconnection. NARUC CPI provides our members with resources, training, webinars, and technical assistance on a variety of distribution-related topics, including distributed energy resource (DER) interconnection, integration, and compensation; integrated distribution planning; smart grid & grid modernization; microgrids; ratemaking (both cost-of-service and performance-based); and valuation of grid assets and services.

Energy Customers

Energy Customers

Ultimately, the energy system must serve the needs of the customers who connect to and pay for energy infrastructure and energy services. Rapid technological change and shifting policy priorities have resulted in many areas where utility regulators play a particularly important role in influencing how customers adopt, respond to, and adapt to new opportunities. The evolving needs of customers at the grid edge are particularly relevant for demand flexibility (e.g., grid-interactive efficient buildings, automated demand response), transportation and heating electrification, and behind-the-meter distributed energy resources (e.g., solar + storage). Furthermore, utility commissions play a critical role in ensuring that all customer perspectives are considered in determining the course of an equitable energy transition, including groups whose voices have traditionally not been heard.

Critical Infrastructure Resilience and Cybersecurity

Critical Infrastructure Resilience, Emergency Preparedness, and Cybersecurity

NARUC CPI supports state commissions in their work to ensure the energy system is safe, secure, and resilient. Commissions are charged with regulating the utilities who routinely deal with threats to system operations, including physical or cybersecurity activities, weather events, and limitations in supply chains or workforce capacity. NARUC’s efforts focus on partnering with subject matter experts across the federal, state, local, and private sectors to explore topical issues, develop valuable decision-support resources, and deliver training to inform regulatory decision making. Targeted NARUC resources are available related to critical infrastructure, cybersecurity, energy emergency management, defense community partnerships, electric grid resilience, and microgrids.

These activities are coordinated with the Committee on Critical Infrastructure and Staff Subcommittee on Electric Reliability and Resilience.

Commission Support

Commission Support

NARUC CPI identifies ongoing and emerging challenges and connects state commissions with expertise and strategies to navigate their complex decision-making. This work includes support for commissions to convene with other key energy decision makers, receive direct assistance through federally funded programs, explore new topics as they arise via facilitated regulator roundtables and quarterly commission staff peer sharing calls, and access recruitment resources to assist with hiring new staff and retaining experts within commissions.

Innovation Webinars

Innovation Webinars

Every month, the NARUC Center for Partnerships & Innovation organizes an Innovation Webinar on an emerging issue in electricity regulation. Held on Thursdays from 3:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. ET, these educational webinars are open to the public.

With support from the U.S. Department of Energy, CPI is pleased to connect its members and the public with new research, subject-matter experts, and diverse opinions on a variety of issues relevant to public utility commissions. Presentation slides and recordings for past webinars are posted on this webpage.


Upcoming Innovation Webinars:


Energy Efficiency

Thursday, October 21, 2023 | 3:00 - 4:00 PM Eastern

Webinar registration and speakers will be available soon.