GWNET brings you the 5th instalment of the “Meet the Women in Energy Empowerment” series which celebrates the work and achievements of the women who are part of the Women in Energy Empowerment Mentoring Programme. This programme is made up of 30 mentee-mentor tandems, with mentees from Kazakhstan, Russia, Turkey, and Ukraine. Meet mentee, Inna Kucherenko, Chief Editor at the Newfolk Oil and Gas Consulting Center LLC in Ukraine.
1) Tell us a little about yourself. What do you love most about what you do?
I was born into a family where my grandmother, mom and dad worked in the energy sector. It looks like I didn’t have a chance to pass by this industry.
My career path led me to an oil and gas consulting company, where I started as a journalist-analyst. Later, I took the position of editor-in-chief.
My job allows me to realise my passion for communications, marketing, and advertising. I love that we help companies in the energy sector achieve their goals by providing them with quality industry information for our analytical publications, as well as holding conferences where we help people in the energy sector find new opportunities for development.
2) What were your goals when you started working in the energy sector? What are your goals today?
From the very beginning, I strived to implement the most modern digital marketing methods and tried to make our communication with subscribers as interactive as possible.
In addition to commercial goals such as increasing the number of subscribers, positive dynamics of brand recognition, and loyalty, I focus on the development of professional qualities and on the development of international cooperation with organisations interested in working with Ukrainian companies.
3) What are the opportunities for sustainable energy in your country?
Ukraine’s energy strategy assumes that renewable energy sources, nuclear energy and natural gas should account for 80% of primary energy supplies. The share of natural gas, in this case, will be 30%. Soon, Ukraine should also approve a new action plan for renewable energy until 2030.
Over the past few years, we have seen a dramatic increase in the number of new solar and wind power plants in Ukraine. The main challenge in the use of RES is not so much the withdrawal of capacities, but rather their effective integration into the power grid. Major players in the Ukrainian energy market are testing opportunities for energy storage and are paying attention to the possibilities of hydrogen production and transportation.
The oil and gas sector in Ukraine over the past ten years has experienced multiple crises associated with changes in domestic fiscal legislation and with changes in gas prices on international markets. Generation from renewable energy sources was also challenged.
To better address issues of concern to energy companies, I initiated a podcast with weekly news coverage and stakeholder interviews. At the moment, in my opinion, the energy sector is going through a certain process of stagnation and our task is to support those industry initiatives that will help the industry develop successfully.
I consider myself lucky to be able to implement my marketing skills in a high-tech industry like energy. At the same time, I would like to focus more on research projects in the future, where I could apply my background as a sociologist. In addition, it would be interesting for me to work on projects that relate not only to the energy sector but also to space development, because, in my opinion, the development of these two areas can bring maximum benefit to society.
As a rule, groups with a wide range of professional backgrounds have good opportunities for joint collaboration. Therefore, I hope that the programme will help me reach a new level of professional development, and I, in turn, will be able to contribute to the development of the energy industry in my country.
6) What advice would you give to women hoping to join the sustainable energy sector?
As I have already noted, the energy sector accumulates all advanced technologies – from the latest developments in chemistry and mechanics to the latest innovations in information technology. This means that you will not have to be bored here and you will need to be ready for continuous learning, as well as the fact that external circumstances can make their own adjustments to the conjuncture of the energy market. If you are ready for interesting and dynamic work, then the energy sector is what you need.
Read more about GWNET’s mentoring programmes here.