Yao works at the World Bank. In his current role, he is the renewable energy pillar lead for Regulatory Indicators for Sustainable Energy (RISE) which assesses policy framework for energy access, energy efficiency and renewable energy in 111 countries. Prior to the World Bank, Yao worked for the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) in Abu Dhabi, the UAE, primarily focused on helping small island developing states (SIDS) develop renewable energy projects. Yao has also worked on renewable mini-grids in rural India with the Rockefeller Foundation. Born and raised in China, he has work experience in China, India, East Africa, the Middle East and the United States. Yao has a masters’ degree in Economics from Johns Hopkins University School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS). When Yao is not trekking through the Pantanal wetland in Brazil, in the tribal communities in Tanzania, or backroads in India, his main hobby is scuba diving – Indian Ocean (Zanzibar), Strait of Hormuz and the Caribbean are many of his favorite spots.