Aashna Aggarwal: New Experiences, Perspective

Aashna Aggarwal spent the summer of 2018 as junior associate at the International Centre for Trade and Sustainable Development in Geneva, Switzerland.

Her internship was funded, in part, by an Energy Access Project program that sponsors student work via internships or research projects that focus on either modern technologies and fuels for cooking or access to reliable, affordable, safe, and sustainable electricity in less developed countries. Below Aggarwal shares her experience in her own words.

What did you do?

At the International Centre for Trade and Sustainable Development, I was a part of the Climate and Energy Team. I focused on organizational tasks and conducted high-level research for the organization centered on the electric vehicle supply chain and Solar Trade Policy in India.

One highlight: I worked on fossil fuel trade subsidies by taking part in the World Trade Organization’s paths forward dialogue on the Fossil Fuel Subsidy Reform. The aim of the dialogue was to discuss various reform strategies for supporting fossil fuels and deepen delegates’ understanding of the importance of efficient incentives for energy resources to facilitate investing in renewable resources to meet energy needs and lower carbon emissions.

What did you take away from the experience?

After spending my summer in an international environment, I learned a lot about high-level policy making, negotiations, and diplomacy. I look forward to bringing this perspective and knowledge back to my Duke classrooms and also utilizing it while engaging in more on the ground research projects.

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