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What's Happening Now

Municipal Internet of Things Blueprint Released

Innovation CitiesJuly 10, 2019 – Joint Venture's civic technology team announced publication of Municipal Internet of Things (IoT) Blueprint, a free PDF download to inform local government leaders about trends in the IoT. Published by the Wireless SuperCluster, a part of the Global City Teams Challenge (GCTC) project, and led by the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), the tool was co-edited by David Witkowski, Executive Director of Joint Venture’s Civic Technologies Program.

Data Release: Silicon Valley has access to cleaner power than CA or the U.S.

solar panels and wind millsJuly 9, 2019 - The Joint Venture Silicon Valley Institute for Regional Studies has released a comparative analysis of local sources of power by emissions intensity. In just three years, the majority of Silicon Valley energy customers – both residents and businesses alike – have transitioned away from PG&E to community choice energy programs.

Read the release

Joint Venture & SVCE Tackle Green Building Rules

Illustration showing connection between clean electricity and clean communityJuly 1, 2019 - Joint Venture is partnering with Silicon Valley Clean Energy to promote local green building rules through an innovative mechanism called reach codes. Under state law, cities and counties may adopt local ordinances that exceed state codes to ensure new buildings promote a clean and healthy future through greenhouse gas (GHG) reductions.

Learn More

Joint Venture Food Recovery Partners with Loaves & Fishes

Loaves & Fishes logoCollaboration will double community impact

July 1, 2019 – Joint Venture Silicon Valley and Loaves & Fishes Family Kitchen have formed a partnership that will enable Joint Venture’s Food Recovery initiative, known as A La Carte, to transfer day-to-day operations to Loaves & Fishes Family Kitchen. Effective immediately, A La Carte operations will be managed by Loaves & Fishes, including pick-up and delivery operations and the fleet of trucks that deliver meals to people who are in need.

Read the News Release

Facebook funds new truck for Food Rescue

group standing in front of truckJuly 1, 2019 - Facebook, in partnership with Flagship Facility Services, Inc., will fund a new food truck for Joint Venture's Food Rescue initiative, known as A La Carte, that has been picking up and distributing food from four of Facebook’s cafes and mini cafes since March. The new truck will increase the size of the fleet that "harvests" prepared food for people in the community who are food-insecure. Facebook has donated more than 22,000 meals through the program to date.

Learn more

Joint Venture partners with Adobe for people with disabilities

people chatting July 1, 2019 - Joint Venture's Silicon Valley Talent Partnership has paired a pro bono team of experts from Adobe to assist nonprofit Project HIRED to help people with disabilities find employment. Have a project that could use expert help?

Contact Joint Venture's SVTP for details.

Joint Venture board adds new members

July 1, 2019 – The Joint Venture board of directors elected two new members at their quarterly meeting: Supervisor Susan Ellenberg and Michael Isip, President and Chief Executive Officer of KQED. “We are delighted to add the expertise of Supervisor Susan Ellenberg and Michael Isip to the Joint Venture board,” said Russell Hancock, President & CEO of Joint Venture.

Read the news release

Meet Duffy Jennings

July 1, 2019 - Duffy Jennings first joined Joint Venture in 2008 as VP of Communications after enjoying a distinguished career as a corporate communications executive and journalist. He retired—or rewired?—from corporate life in February 2019 and, with the new release of his memoir, Reporter’s Note Book: A San Francisco Chronicle Journalist’s Diary of the Shocking Seventies, he added author to his list.

Read Duffy's profile

Silicon Valley Indicators

indicators home page Get comprehensive information and data about Silicon Valley’s economic and community health at

Data and charts from the Silicon Valley Index (and more) are available on a dynamic and interactive website that allows users to further explore Silicon Valley trends.

Download the 2019 Silicon Valley Index.

Investors Spotlight

Donors invest in Joint Venture with both general support and project-specific gifts that help us react nimbly to provide analysis and innovative solutions to issues that confront our regional economies and quality of life. Here are just a few of our many investors:

SiliconSage Builders logo Urban Catalyst logo Urban Community logo

Joint Venture offers a variety of support and sponsorship opportunities for individuals, corporations, and public sector organizations. To inquire about becoming a member of our Investors Council, call (408) 298-9330 or visit our Become an Investor page. To see our current investors, visit our investors pages.

What is Joint Venture Silicon Valley?

Established in 1993, Joint Venture brings together Silicon Valley’s established and emerging leaders—from business, government, academia, labor and the broader community—to spotlight issues and work toward innovative solutions. In this short video see what Silicon Valley leaders have to say about the organization.

Power Quality Portal Project

Why This Matters

Power quality and reliability are critical for commercial customers, especially those in high-technology industries. Even sub-second voltage dips, swells or outages can shut down essential equipment, and interrupt product development and production processes. At the same time, power quality and reliability are becoming more difficult to manage. Variable renewable resources such as solar and wind are expanding on the grid, as are large and intermittent loads such as electric vehicle charging.

What is a power quality event? waveforms graphic

Historically, power reliability has been measured in terms of the frequency of power outages lasting longer than 5 minutes. Utilities metrics such SAEDI [System Average Interruption Duration Index] and SAIFI [System Average Interruption Frequency Index] define and track reliability. Momentary outages and power quality are related, but involve a much finer level of resolution.

Momentary outages, defined as zero voltage events lasting for less than five minutes, are measured via MAIFI [Momentary Average Interruption Frequency Index]. Even momentary outages can represent a material business issue, as an EPRI study found the average impact of a one-second outage for a commercial facility was 21 minutes in downtime.

Disturbances 1996 Duration of facility outage

Yet sustained and momentary outage metrics don’t reflect the full range of power disturbances that result in customer impacts. Power quality is further defined as ‘any occurrence manifested in voltage, current or frequency deviations which results in failure or mis-operation of end use equipment.'

Sub-second voltage dips or swells greater than 30% of nominal often also result in customer impacts, as defined by indices such as the CBEMA-ITIC curve. And typical of many commercial and industrial zones with older utility infrastructure, such power quality disturbances in the SEEDZ area occur regularly.

Ways To Address Power Quality And Reliability

Metrics such as SAEFI and SAIDI broadly define grid reliability, yet data and metrics for measuring power quality on the grid are currently limited and not well understood. A grid-level view of detailed data on power quality events - date, time, magnitude, duration, impact – is essential to addressing and improving power quality. This detailed data pinpoints power quality issues over time, and aids in assessing and deploying the most cost-effective fixes.

A recent EPRI study of power quality revealed that voltage sags and interruptions averaged 18 a year across the U.S. Where incident rates are high and/or where customer impacts are most material, improvements in utility grid infrastructure are necessary to reduce the number and severity of power quality issues. Furthermore, resiliency improvements can be made at customers’ facilities - to better ‘ride through’ such disturbances on the grid, and in turn, reduce impacts these same facilities may have on grid power quality. As summarized in the table below, power quality monitoring, mitigation, and improvements can be made at customer locations, and in grid infrastructure and services.

PQ Important results: Avg voltage sags and interruptions

Establishing A SEEDZ Power Quality Monitoring ‘Portal’

Within the SEEDZ area, several major customers have implemented detailed power quality meters at their facilities’ utility service entries. These meters are providing important benefits, helping customers to pinpoint power quality events, correlate events with equipment malfunctions, optimize equipment placement, and provide a quantified basis for investment in power quality mitigation equipment.

Yet currently, utilities do not generally have visibility to this detailed level of power quality data across their distribution grids. For a customer experiencing an outage or a power quality event, it is difficult to quickly determine if the event was specific to their circuit, substation, or area-wide transmission. And for the utility, it is difficult to quickly assess to what degree a given event was ‘felt’ across the network. When events occur in the SEEDZ area, neighboring customers often engage in social networking and email each other to determine the extent of the problem - in parallel with contacting the utility.

SEEDZ is now in the process of establishing an area-wide power quality monitoring system that will aggregate detailed data from customer meters in the area. The system will collect event data from instrumentation at customers, as well as qualitative input on events and customer impacts. Log in access to the SEEDZ Power Quality Monitoring ‘Portal’ will provide users with an immediate view of recent incidents in the area. It will also provide plots of incidents over time versus various power quality standards such as CBEMA-ITIC or P1668, and on a geographic overlay. And it will provide access to root cause information when determined.

The business case for PQ monitoring Justification for PQ data aquisition

The system aims to facilitate improved power quality and resiliency in the area, incorporate leading smart grid power quality standards, and enable the zone to serve as a model and test bed for grid integration of distributed generation, electric vehicles, and advanced industrial uses.


  • Understanding the Power Quality Environment: Bill Howe, EPRI (slides)
  • Power Quality and the PG&E System: Jerry Hutchison and Frank Arroyo, PG&E (slides)
  • EPRI’s Power Quality Research Program: Bill Howe, EPRI (slides)
  • Local Power Quality Issues and Monitoring Capabilities: Ralph Renne, NetApp/ Paul Niemann, NetApp (slides)
  • Power Quality Metering: Andy Taylor, Applied Power Technologies (slides)
  • Power Quality Economics: Bill Howe, EPRI (slides)
  • Business Case for Measuring Power Quality: Ralphe Renne, NetApp (slides)
  • Managing Power Quality in Data Center Environments: Dennis Symanski, EPRI (slides)
  • Understanding Equipment Sensitivities: Mark Stephens, EPRI (slides)
  • Power Quality Standards, SEMI F47, IEC 61000-4-34: Mark Stephens, EPRI (slides)
  • Embedded Solutions for Improving End-Use System Performance: Mark Stephens (slides)
  • Mult-Level Approaches for Mitigating Power Quality Issues: Bill Howe, EPRI (slides)
  • High-Definition Power Network Simulation and Visualization: Peter Evans, New Power Technologies (slides)
  • Power Quality Impacts and Mitigation: Larry Owens, Silicon Valley Power (slides)

In The News

July 17, 2019 - (KPIX TV-5) - Elon Musk Developing AI-Connected Brain Implant To ‘Secure Humanity’s Future’: Joint Venture Silicon Valley CEO Russ Hancock believes if anyone can merge human beings with artificial intelligence, it would be Musk. More

July 16, 2019 - (Energy Pages) - Rise of Energy Choice Diminishes PG&E’s Silicon Valley Market Share:Silicon Valley residents have greater access to cleaner energy compared to the rest of California and the rest of the country, says The Joint Venture Silicon Valley Institute for Regional Studies. More

July 10, 2019 - (American City & County) - Small cells, big uncertainties: “The FCC’s approach is a pretty blanket approach. And it may not account for all of the nuances of local government..." notes David Witkowski, executive director of civic technology initiatives at Joint Venture Silicon Valley. More

July 8, 2019 - (Mercury News) - Exodus: For Bay Area millennials, moving up means moving out: In 2017, roughly 36 percent of Silicon Valley adults between the ages of 18 and 34 lived with their parents, according to an analysis by Joint Venture Silicon Valley. More

July 5, 2019(KPIX-TV5) - New Numbers Show Silicon Valley Tech Jobs Are Moving North: "The workforce is young," says Joint Venture CEO Russell Hancock.  More

June 29, 2019 - (Mercury News) - Pizarro: Literary Send-Off - Joint Venture Silicon Valley CEO Russell Hancock and his wife, Marguerite Hancock, hosted a reception to bid farewell to Duffy Jennings, who served as Joint Venture’s communications director for the past 11 years. More

June 26, 2019 - (Michigan Daily) - KLA opens temporary R&D site in Ann Arbor:According to Curbed San Francisco, a recent census done by Joint Venture Silicon Valley discovered the median home sale price for a house is $1.2 million. More

June 26, 2019 - (The Almanac) - Manzanita Talks move forward: Efforts to bring together public and private sector leaders to talk about how to address regional transportation problems moved forward on June 13 with what Joint Venture Silicon Valley President and CEO Russell Hancock called a historic discussion. More

June 25, 2019 - (KQED News) - Stanford Wants to Expand: Russell Hancock, a Stanford lecturer and also president and CEO of Joint Venture Silicon Valley, said, "It's always baffling to me when the neighbors vilify Stanford. This is a world class institution. There would be no Silicon Valley without Stanford." More

June 19, 2019 - (NPR News) - Google Pledges $1 Billion For Affordable Housing: We are seeing an increase in the people that are living in RVs or other temporary shelters," said Rachel Massaro, director of research for Joint Venture. More

June 18 - (KQED News) - Google Pledges $1 Billion to Help Fight Bay Area Housing Crisis It Helped Create: Joint Venture reported that affordable housing units represented only a small share of recently approved units in Silicon Valley.   More

June 18, 2019 - (Mercury News) - Californians sharply divided over how to tackle housing shortage: Russell Hancock, CEO of Joint Venture Silicon Valley, believes Bay Area residents have become more open to new solutions to the housing shortage in the last five years. More

June 18, 2019 - (Mercury News) - With SUV ads and snark, desert city looks to woo Bay Area residents: According to a study by the regional think-tank Joint Venture Silicon Valley, the region gained about 62,000 foreign-born residents between July 2015 and July 2018, while 64,300 residents left. More

June 14, 2019 - (AJOT) -Commute times across Silicon Valley have increased by 17% over the past decade, adding an average of 43 minutes weekly per commuter, according to the 2018 Silicon Valley Index by Joint Venture Silicon Valley. More

June 12, 2019 - (Los Altos Town Crier) - Food truck puts corporate leftovers to community good: Silicon Valley Food Rescue operates as a project of Joint Venture Silicon Valley. More