Today the Italian module of Open Africa Power 2022 starts, with a focus on the new frontiers of the energy sector. The module will be delivered online till mid-March with the involvement of the Italian academic partners of the program: Politecnico di Torino, Politecnico di Milano and SDA Bocconi. After an introductory speech by Enel Foundation to welcome the students, the first lecture will be delivered by Professors of the Politecnico di Torino and focus on “Additive Manufacturing”.
Politecnico di Torino will also discuss throughout the sessions Data science for big energy data, ICT applied to networks’ management, marine energy, electrification and renewables more in general, with a focus on hydropower. Professors from the Politecnico di Milano will elaborate on the solar and wind technologies, sharing PoliMi’s energy projects and activities in Africa and guiding a virtual visit to PoliMi Wind Tunnel. SDA Bocconi will wrap up the Italian module with a final session on the drivers of the energy sector and the impact of renewable technologies, with a final Q&A and open discussion on the African Case.
This year Open Africa Power saw the admission of 150 outstanding students coming from 35 African countries, with more than 50% being women and almost 50% having PhDs/MBAs. The aim of the program is to empower a new generation of African leaders in order to support them in enforcing the clean energy transition the continent will go through in the next decades. The application was open to all African students, including those African nationals currently living abroad, but wanting to relocate back to Africa, as one of the program’s aims is to contribute to talent retention in the continent.
The African module, delivered in parallel with the online course provided by the Florence School of Regulation, took place last summer, held in synergy with the Graduate School of Business (GSB) of the University of Cape Town, our partner in this venture. It provided students with a comprehensive overview of the energy sector, its current challenges and opportunities, while also deep diving in the major issues faced by the power sector. Academics, researchers, and experts from Enel Foundation, the Enel Group and GSB shared their knowledge and experience on subjects such as smart grids, resilience, thermal generation, risk mitigation for South Saharan Africa and Independent Power Producers, policy and regulation, RE investments in Africa, and many more.
The program is at its 5th edition, launched in 2018 in collaboration with top academic partners such as Strathmore University and University of Nairobi in Kenya, University of Addis Ababa in Ethiopia, University of Cape Town in South Africa, and Italian institutions such as Politecnico di Torino, Politecnico di Milano, Bocconi University, Florence School of Regulation, and Venice International University. In 2021 Enel Foundation also launched its partnership with Sustainable Energy for ALL (SEforALL), in order to foster new opportunities for women and youth to participate and lead in the solutions that will create a more sustainable and equitable energy future.
Open Africa Power has received significant support from institutional entities such as: Italy’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation; Iceland’s Ministry for Foreign Affairs; NAMA Women Advancement Establishment. Their support to the Open Africa Power program is framed within their broader activity in the field of development concerning the African continent. These three institutions, thanks to their long history of supporting sustainable development and social inclusion, are valuable additions to the Open Africa Power program and we are extremely glad to have them at our side.