Charting a Resilient Path

Wise leaders take risk into account. Many businesses and communities are not yet addressing the current and future risks they face from consequences of climate change. Flooding, drought, subsidence, heat, severe wildfires, storms and sea level rise are examples. Minerva helps our clients evaluate these risks, identify opportunities, prepare plans and take action to protect their assets and strengthen resilience.

We work with companies, cities and other agencies to align their plans, strategies, operations, products and services to reduce risks and to adapt to a changing climate, at the scale of the challenge. We identify clean tech solutions and assist growing companies in achieving success. 

Our goal is to help businesses and agencies lead and thrive in a rapidly changing world.

Our Focus

To help our clients become resilient to an uncertain future through innovation for sustainability;
circular economy; reducing GHG emissions, water and carbon; and, pro-active climate adaptation and restoration actions.

What We Have Achieved

  • Carried out a comprehensive assessment of the Lithium-ion battery market and strategic implications for a client.

  • Contributed a chapter on Silicon Valley Innovation with case studies on Google, Facebook, Stanford, HP and VMware for EPRI’s book: Sustainable Electricity Volume II to be published Summer 2018.

  • Served on California Governor Brown’s Technical Advisory Group for Climate Adaptation strategy in 2016.

  • Educated property owners about holistic green and healthy building solutions, upgrades and financing.

  • Provided symposia on advanced technology for water, holistic building upgrades and other climate and resilience solutions.

  • Assisted clean tech start-ups with strategic planning and business development.

  • Reviewed sustainability plans and recommended next steps for major cities in the San Francisco Bay Area.

  • Created dynamic Climate Leaders dinners series which brings together diverse executives and other innovators to address the shared challenge of climate consequences.



Our Team

Minerva Silicon Valley's Team brings a wide range of experience, skills and insights to serve you.


Marianna Grossman   

Founder and Managing Partner

Marianna Grossman is founder and managing partner of Minerva Ventures, a consultancy focused on solutions for a resilient future. Minerva advises companies and communities on climate risk, adaptation and resilience, and guides clean tech startups in water, energy, remediation, finance and climate analytics. She specializes in bringing people and institutions together across sectors to collaborate, invent and implement solutions that enhance sustainability, build resilience and address the consequences of climate change. Previously, she led Sustainable Silicon Valley for seven years, working to create a more resilient region. Before that she had corporate roles in the automotive, computer and semiconductor industries. She served on the 2016 California Climate Adaptation and Resilience Action Plan Technical Advisory Group for Governor Brown, and the Sustainability Committee of the SF Bay Area Super Bowl 50 Host Committee for the 2015 season. She serves on the board or is a member of: Transportation Choices for Sustainable Communities; California Congress of the International Living Future Institute; the federal Sustainable Water Resources Roundtable; the Balaton Group; the ClimateMusic Project; and, the advisory councils for climate action for the Cities of Palo Alto and Mountain View. She earned a BA cum laude, with distinction in Policy Studies from Dartmouth College and an MBA from Yale School of Management.


Karl Van Orsdol            

Global Energy and Sustainability Advisor

Karl advises municipalities and global corporations on energy data management systems, energy markets and risk management, climate action planning and climate mitigation projects. Karl served as a Principal Consultant in DNV GL’s Sustainable Buildings and Communities group where he focused on energy data management systems, energy markets and risk management, climate action planning and climate mitigation projects. His clients included the cities of Boston, Metro Vancouver, and Palo Alto. Among other projects, he prepared strategic management reviews of energy consumption. Karl served Global Strategist for Energy and Sustainability at Hewlett Packard implementing energy management practices across 1,200 HP facilities in 170 countries. Prior to HP, he spent 10 years as energy risk manager for the City of Palo Alto where he led the development of the City’s Climate Action Plan and Roadmap; managed the financial and operational risks associated with the City’s electricity and natural gas procurement portfolio; and, led the negotiations with renewable energy providers for PPA’s for electricity and NAESB gas contracts. Karl’s international experience includes living and conducting research on human impacts on ecosystems in Uganda. He earned a Ph.D. in Environmental Science from Cambridge University, an MBA from UCLA and a BA in Biology from Grinnell College.

Kanako McPhail  Director of Research & Operations

Kanako McPhail           

Director of Research & Operations

Kanako excels in project management, financial analysis and research. She held senior positions in corporate banking and capital markets, in New York, Tokyo and London for Nippon Credit Bank, Chase and the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, respectively.  More recently, Kanako has focused on Microfinance and Sustainability, working initially for Opportunity Fund. She worked for two years in business development at Sustainable Silicon Valley helping to catalyze changes for a better & more sustainable Bay Area and joined Minerva, leading business development in 2016.  Kanako has a Certificate in Advanced Program in Sustainable Management at UC Berkeley. She earned her MS in business as a Sloan Fellow at London Business School, and her MA in Economics and International Relations from SAIS, The Johns Hopkins University.  Her BA is in English Literature from Kansai University in Osaka. 

Raka Gupta  Design Consultant

Raka Gupta

Design Consultant

Raka’s forte is creating and developing concepts to communicate ideas accurately. As a Graphic Designer, she has been creating designs for both print and online mediums that include brochures, flyers, posters, concept-based diagrams, logos, icons, e-newsletters, e-brochures, and responsive websites. She is proficient in Adobe Photoshop, InDesign, and Illustrator; HTML 5, CSS 3, Squarespace, and Bootstrap 3; Content Management Systems – Pyro and WordPress. Raka loves to indulge in oil painting whenever she gets a break. Her past experience as a Technical Writer helps her organize the content and layout in such a way that the content is displayed accurately and aesthetically.

Our Clients and Partners