Robert Stoner is the interim director of MITEI and founding director of the MIT Tata Center for Technology and Design. He was previously MITEI’s deputy director for science and technology. Stoner is currently a member of the MIT Energy Council. He also serves on the Board of Directors of, and the Science and Technology Committee of, the Alliance for Sustainable Energy, which oversees the U.S. National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL), and as a member and secretary of the Global Commission to End Energy Poverty.
Stoner is the inventor of numerous computational and ultrafast optical measurement techniques and has built and managed successful technology firms in the semiconductor, IT, and optics industries. From 2007 through 2009, he lived and worked in Africa and India while serving in a variety of senior roles within the Clinton Foundation, including as the CEO of the Clinton Development Initiative, and director of the Clinton Climate Initiative for Africa. His present research at MIT focuses on solutions to energy poverty, and the design and optimization of energy systems and business models in the developing world. He earned his bachelor’s degree in engineering physics from Queen’s University and Ph.D. from Brown University in condensed matter physics.