Stephen D. Comello Ph.D. // Stanford Graduate School of Business, USATo the profile
Landscape Analysis of Hydrogen in the United StatesResearch Seminars
An industry analysis is performed to understand the current and potential future states of the hydrogen supply chain in the United States. The motivating questions examined are: (i) to what extent is hydrogen a decarbonization option for the United States, and (ii) how this might manifest itself in various industries. The methodology used to answer these questions is qualitative social research, which emphasizes an understanding of social phenomena through direct observation and communication with participants, while stressing contextual accuracy. The main tool used to explore the hydrogen landscape is the semi-structured interviewing approach. Seventy-two interviews were conducted during the period April – July 2021, yielding over 55 hours of discussion, the contents of which is the basis for analysis. Analysis is supplemented and further supported with cost, business model and policy literature. Three kinds of findings in service of answering the motivating questions are yielded. First, we present and explicate eight general/cross-cutting themes meant to synthesize the current state and outlook of hydrogen in the United States. Second, taking an industry view, we assess the extent to which value chains and specific components within them have reached commercial viability broadly and identify areas of further development. Third, taking a firm-level view, we describe a set of generalized business models for currently viable and rapidly emerging hydrogen value chains.