Chaired by Prof. Julia E. King, Member of the EIT Governing Board, this EIT seminar focused on one of the thematic areas designated for the first two or three Knowledge and Innovation Communities (KICs): Climate change mitigation and adaptation. Interest was high and the audience was a good reflection of the variety of actors involved in the knowledge triangle, with representatives from higher education, research, technology transfer, government and business.
To set the scene for the seminar, Prof. Julia E. King presented the views of the Governing Board on 'Climate change mitigation and adaptation' as a KIC theme. Sketching out the potential scope of this thematic area, Prof. King mentioned for the area of mitigation– by way of example: low carbon transport; forestry and farming; waste and landfill; energy efficiency devices; low energy/low emissions processes; and small scale carbon capture and storage. For the field of adaptation, potential topics include, again as examples, prediction and planning; weather and flood; crops and farming; infrastructure impact; resilient water sources. However, not only are these lists non-exhaustive, but there are also possible synergies with the two other KIC themes, i.e. Future information and communication society; and sustainable energy, and notably with the latter. To shed further light on the topic from different angles, a number of keynote speakers from a variety of backgrounds shared their views on the challenges lying ahead in this field.
In a session dedicated more particularly to the KIC opportunity in the area of climate change, Prof. King highlighted the idea of co-location centres, which will be a key element of the KIC structure. KICs are expected to have, typically, four to six co-location centres or major 'nodes', where staff from different stakeholders come to work together. This will be a crucial element for the success of the KICs, since – in Prof. King's words – knowledge transfer is a "contact sport" where people need to meet face-to-face. Furthermore, each co-location centre should encompass a significant part of the innovation chain and actively reach out to other partners, such as local clusters of SMEs.
In a second part, an open discussion with EIT Governing Board Members (chair: Dr. Martin Schuurmans, panel members: Prof. João Caraça, Dr. Gołębiowska-Tataj, Prof. Julia E. King, Dr. Peter Tropschuh) addressed key features of the KICs, and helped to clarify several questions from the audience in relation to the preparations for the KIC partnerships. Among the central questions discussed were: co-location centres, the development of a KIC and incentives.
Prof. Julia King (EIT Governing Board Member)
Presentation on "A Knowledge and Innovation Community (KIC) in Climate Change Adaptation and Mitigation - Introduction"
Presentation on "Sustainable Growth and Competitiveness through Innovation: KIC in Climate Change Mitigation and Adaptation"
Prof. Sir Brian Hoskins (Climate Change Committee member and Director of the Grantham Institute for Climate Change, Imperial College London)
Presentation on "Climate Change - the scale and urgency of the challenge"
Esko Kivisaari (Federation of Finnish Financial Services)
Presentation on "Adaptation - preparing for the new conditions"
Patrick Oliva (Executive Vice-President, Michelin)
Presentation on "Mitigation - a renaissance lies ahead"
Pat Burtis (Investment Manager, Amadeus Capital Partners)
Presentation on " 'Clean Tech' - climate change and new business opportunities"