Ilan's research career started with his Diplomarbeit on the topic of “Integrating Plug-In Electric Vehicles in Microgrids”, which he developed in cooperation between Fraunhofer Institute for Systems and Innovation Research (FhG ISI), Karlsruhe and the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, Berkeley, California. He was funded by the German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD).
His research granted him the degree of Business & Industrial Engineering from the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT), in 2010 and encouraged him to pursue post-graduate studies in academia within the SETS Joint Doctorate at Universidad Pontificia Comilas (UPCO) in Madrid, Spain, as well as Kungliga Tekniska Högskolan (KTH) in Stockholm, Sweden. Between working in UPCO's Instituto de Investigación Tecnológica (IIT), and KTH's Electric Power Systems Department, he spent half a year at the Department of Statistical Science of University College London (UCL), UK, to deepen his understanding of stochastic optimization and econometrics.
Ilan successfully finished his doctorate and obtained a joint PhD title from UPCO, KTH and TU Delft with the highest possible grade mentioned in the SETS program: Outstanding. He joined the Vlerick Energy Center in January 2015 and was a post-doctoral researcher until he became a research fellow as of November 2016.