December 14, 2020
Enel Foundation hosted the fifth edition of Enel’s annual meeting with academic partners under the framework of the World Energy for Universities (We4U) program, the Enel Group’s platform to develop research partnerships.
The event celebrated the global partnership with academia and research centers steered by Enel Foundation and aimed at sharing the results achieved by joint research projects. It also set future priorities on the launch of new research challenges, alongside stimulating cross-collaboration initiatives between academic partners, corporate leaders and the research community at large. The title of the event, “The power of knowledge for a clean energy future”, stems from the global ambition of We4U, which is aimed at leveraging on synergies between academia and the corporate world to ensure a sustainable future for all.
The event included discussions on megatrends impacting the energy transition and featured presentations by the Enel Group on open challenges alongside ongoing Innovability® activities, while academic partners presented their research activities. Participants in the event included Italian composer, pianist and philosopher Giovanni Allevi, Enel CEO Francesco Starace, Enel Chairman Michele Crisostomo, Mark Kramer, co-founder of consulting firm FSG, Meghan O’Sullivan, Professor of the Practice of International Affairs at Harvard Kennedy School, Ricardo Mena, Director of United Nations Office for Disaster Risk Reduction (UNDRR), Federico Brocchieri, climate negotiations expert and member of Italy and the EU's technical teams to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), alongside several Enel Group top executives. The event included, among its moderators, Matteo Di Castelnuovo, SDA Associate Professor of Practice in Energy Economics at Bocconi University.
Francesco Starace said: “Technological and social disruption drives continuous changes in companies, which can either choose to be reactive or to anticipate trends and take the reins of this process, guiding change themselves. Thanks to the We4U program, Enel and partner academies want to grasp the early signals of society and emerging innovations in order to anticipate and accelerate change, with the aim to reach, as soon as possible, an entirely decarbonized society powered only by renewables. Cooperation is the only way to achieve this ambitious goal.”
Giovanni Allevi said: "The feeling of every innovator, as well as the fear of exploring new territories and the guilt of giving up habits, is certainly the thrill of discovery. Do not dread breaking the rules when your heart asks for it. We must not be afraid of destabilizing a system, as the need for change is in its nature."