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Warren Schirtzinger - High Tech Strategies, Inc.. Seattle, WA, US

Warren Schirtzinger Warren Schirtzinger

Partner | High Tech Strategies, Inc.


A highly regarded market- and product-strategy consultant to CleanTech companies, startups and technology businesses.




SMUD Solar: A Roadmap for Utilities in Transition


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The Strategic Advantage of Living Buildings




Warren is a highly regarded market- and product-strategy consultant to CleanTech companies, utilities, startups and technology businesses.

Introducing and democratizing new technologies and innovations is what he does -- Warren is responsible for helping to launch some of the most important technology and clean-energy innovations of the last twenty years including:
- the first large scale utility-sponsored residential solar program (Sacramento Municipal Utility District),
- the first performance-based energy management certification program (Northwest Energy Education Institute),
- the first hybrid localization/venture capital fund (Nikko Securities)
- the first augmented reality binoculars for marine navigation (Advanced Marine Technology)
- the first industrial FTIR sensor for on-line quality control (Measurex/Honeywell)

Warren has worked with a number of technology-focused startups during their formation years including: Apple, Adobe, Harman International, Intermec, MicroConnex, Nikko Securities, Audion Labs, BioScan, Pacific Horizon Ventures, and many others. Over the last two decades, he has consulted on strategic marketing, technology adoption and business issues to a variety of CleanTech and high-tech firms in the United States.

Industry Expertise (5)

Manufacturing Cleantech Industrial Automation Renewables and Environmental Utilities

Areas of Expertise (7)

Crossing the Chasm Diffusion of Innovation Cleantech Technology Adoption Start Ups Strategic Marketing Product Management

Education (2)

The Ohio State University, Fisher College of Business: Ph.D., Marketing 1981

The College of Wooster: B.A., Analytical Chemistry 1978

Affiliations (1)

  • American Solar Energy Society

Languages (2)

  • English
  • German

Media Appearances (5)

Smart Grid Standards Must Come First

High Tech Stategies  


Technology adoption is all about standards. To succeed with consumers, one firm’s gadget often has to work with other gadgets from other firms.

Technology moves so quickly that standards set by committees usually come too late. Instead, the industry organizes itself around de-facto standards championed by single firms with the clout to make them stick. For example, as Intel has done with microprocessors...

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Five Reasons Your CleanTech Innovation Isn’t a Mainstream Product

High Tech Strategies  


Below are five common mistakes that CleanTech companies make when trying to achieve what is typically called “mainstream market acceptance.” Most of these mistakes are found in poorly-constructed go-to-market programs. And any two or three of these mistakes can delay, or indefinitely postpone, mass-market adoption of a CleanTech product. The primary symptom you will notice is sales cycles become painfully long, or even infinite. This is followed by a multitude of bad outcomes, including ultimate failure of the business. This list includes comments about corrective action to take in each case...

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The Solar Industry Doesn’t Care About Consumer Preference; Believes Low Cost will FORCE Everyone to Adopt

High Tech Strategies  


Every analysis of the solar industry that has been published recently says that cost is the only factor that matters when forecasting the adoption of solar power. Perhaps there will be a minor mention of technical enhancements like battery storage or blockchain, but the solar industry is narrowly focused on $/KWH.

What if we were to apply the solar industry’s myopia to another form of energy….

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Four Characteristics of Early Adopters That Will Help, and Then Later Hurt, Your CleanTech Business

High Tech Strategies  


Early adopters play a significant role in the beginnings of your CleanTech company.

In order for CleanTech products to achieve mass market appeal, they must be refined and improved by a sequence of users, starting with innovators and early adopters. This dynamic, called Diffusion of Innovation, is critical to the success of any emerging CleanTech product or technology. Without the adaptation and improvement that’s demanded by early users, mainstream customers (over 80% of the market) will not adopt your CleanTech product...

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The U.S. Solar Industry Just Entered Another Period of Uncertainty. Here’s How to Fly Right Through It

High Tech Strategies  


After making impressive progress over the last ten years, the U.S. solar industry has entered a period of uncertainty. The good news is a renewed emphasis on the principles of technology adoption will allow the solar industry to fly right through these dark clouds of uncertainty.

On the positive side, U.S. solar industry revenues have grown from $42 million in 2007 to $210 million in 2017. Nearly half of utility-scale capacity installed in 2017 came from renewables, and about half of that was solar...

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Event Appearances (1)

SMUD Solar: A Roadmap For Utilities in Transition

ASES National Solar Conference  San Francisco, CA




  • Keynote
  • Author Appearance


*Will consider certain engagements for no fee

Articles (1)

SMUD Solar: A Roadmap For Utilities in Transition ASES National Solar Conference Proceedings


There is near universal agreement that the utility sector is in the midst of a transformation. The 100-year-old model of centralized generation and one-way power flow is being disrupted by alternative energy technologies that enable customers to generate and store their own electricity.

Recent surveys of utility executives confirm the conclusion that traditional utility business models need to change as a result of these (and other) disruptive forces. New technologies, renewable portfolio standards, and federal carbon regulations have created a minefield of issues and challenges for the electric utility industry.

As incumbent utilities grapple with the daunting challenge of reinventing themselves, the pioneering work at Sacramento Municipal Utility District (SMUD) provides a credible foundation from which to construct a newage road map for utilities going forward. Methods and strategies employed by SMUD in the 1990s and 2000s can help utilities of all types successfully navigate this disruptive transition to a clean energy future.

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