In October 2014, the Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI) and the U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE’s) Office of Electricity Delivery and Energy Reliability (OE) held a conference to assess progress, impacts, benefits, and lessons learned from utility smart grid projects and to exchange information about future challenges and opportunities. The conference provided participants with information and analysis resulting from unprecedented investments in smart grid deployments over the past five years, funded in large part through cost-shared grants under the Recovery Act. More than 150 participants representing electric utilities, federal and state government agencies, equipment manufacturers, vendors, universities, and national laboratories attended and contributed their experiences, perspectives, and insights.

The event featured results from field experience gained in both the EPRI Smart Grid Demonstration Initiative and DOE’s Smart Grid Investment Grant Program (SGIG) and Smart Grid Demonstration Program (SGDP), with a focus on smart grid successes, surprises, and challenges. Utility presentations and panel discussions covered a variety of topics such as technology readiness, customer responses, and future directions and possibilities for grid modernization. There were nine panel presentations and discussions. This report summarizes the information presented during the conference and the key points raised during the group discussions that followed the presentation sessions. 

In addition to the conference proceedings, the SGIG and SGDP highlights report, Jumpstarting a Modern Grid, is available for download. The report was presented at the conference and provides highlights and summaries of the projects that received funding through the SGIG and SGDP programs.