Kathleen Vaillancourt, Ph.D. MBA


Pioneering leader in energy system optimization modelling, shaping critical decision-making tools for energy policies at a regional, national and global scale.

Kathleen is a professional entrepreneur with 20 years of experience in 3E (energy-economy-environment) system modelling and consulting. She is the President and founder of ESMIA (Canada) and the main instigator of the North American TIMES Energy Model (NATEM) which has become a crucial tool for many decision-makers in prestigious organizations throughout North America. Her leadership extends to directing projects that develop and apply energy system models for supporting governments, utilities, consultants, private companies, with energy and climate policy analysis.

As a globally recognized expert in energy system optimization, Kathleen is actively involved in the ETSAP program of the International Energy Agency (IEA), alongside the world’s best-in-class TIMES modellers, the most advanced energy system optimisation modelling platform. In Canada, she serves on the board of the Energy Modelling Hub (EMH), a large initiative funded by the federal government to establish a pan-Canadian open-source electricity modelling platform.

Her extensive background includes collaborating with major international organizations such as the European Commission, the International Energy Agency, the U.S. Department of Energy, and various industrial and corporate entities in the energy sector. She has played a pivotal role in developing energy models that support studies of complex problems such as energy transition and energy security pathways. Her work is characterized by a profound understanding of energy technology innovation and cost-optimal GHG mitigation strategies, developed through numerous high-impact projects.

She holds a Ph.D. in environmental sciences from the Université du Québec à Montréal (Canada) and an MBA from HEC Montréal (Canada). She contributed to +35 peer-reviewed papers on energy system modelling.