JSP Student Profile

Rafael A. Grillo Avila


Year: 2nd Year Grad Student - JSP

Email: rafael_grilloavila@berkeley.edu

Website: https://www.linkedin.com/in/rgrilloavila/


I am a first-year Ph.D. student in the Jurisprudence and Social Policy Program at Berkeley Law, aiming to focus in Law and Economics as it pertains to sustainable development. I am interested in exploring how domestic and international legal and political institutions can catalyze the financing of renewable energy technology and carbon offsetting programs, and ultimately a transition to a low-carbon economy that raises all boats and mitigates the worst effects of climate change. Before coming to UC Berkeley, I received an A.B. in Politics from Princeton University, and subsequently worked with Environmental Defense Fund, coordinating with NGOs, industry, and government to establish a global cap on international aviation emissions from the year 2020 onwards through the development and adoption of a market-based measure in the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO). I then worked as a software developer for Sumitomo Mitsui Banking Corporation before making the move to California. Having worked in teams of economists, lawyers, policymakers, programmers, and industry experts, I am a firm believer in multidisciplinary approaches to discovery, research and innovation. I look forward to producing actionable findings alongside my JSP colleagues, in a program that encourages such an approach!


Ph.D. Jurisprudence and Social Policy, University of California, Berkeley (2017-2022, expected)

A.B. Politics, Princeton University (2010-2014)
-Concentration: Comparative Politics, Research Methods
-Minors: Chinese Language & Culture, Environmental Studies, Finance, Political Economy, Statistics & Machine Learning


Law & Economics
Sustainable Development


-Data Science for the 21st Century, NSF Research Traineeship Participant (2017-2018)
-Fred Fox Fund Grant (2012)

Academic Experiences:

-Hertog Global Strategy Initiative Fellow, Columbia University (2013)

Employment Experiences:

-Software Developer, AVP; JRI America, Inc. (2016-2017)
-International Aviation Environmental Policy Fellow; Environmental Defense Fund (2014-2016)
-Guggenheim Criminal Justice Fellow; Northern Manhattan Coalition for Immigrant Rights (2012)

Curriculum Vitae