S-REGENER - Reducing greenhouse emissions by networking of enterprises and researchers

Project: Research project

Description

The application of renewable energy systems and the relevant supply-chains are characterized by constant innovation, as the products are usually non-standard systems and the technology providers involved typically are young businesses with a close relation to research institutions. In Austria the diffusion of renewable energy systems in many cases has been driven by collaborations of visionary public research institutions, start-ups and suppliers - applied research still plays a strong role in the implementation of these systems especially when it comes to entering new markets. Therefore a particular asset of the project is the partnership with Prof. Hans Schnitzer of Graz University of Technology. He has gained international reputation in the field of renewable energy (eg 1st Chairman of the "European Roundtable on Cleaner Production, Evaluator of the UNIDO National Cleaner Production Centers Programme) and has sparked several start-ups in this field.
For the REGENER project TU Graz Technology Transfer Office has identified 4 Austrian SMEs which have developed outstanding solutions in solar heating and cooling, photovoltaic, biomass and biogas and have won several innovation awards. These SMEs are eager to enter new CEE markets by preparing pilot projects in regional key sectors but need regional suppliers for their systems.
The two CEE regions addressed in REGENER (Northern Bulgaria, West Croatia) are characterized by the emergence of new technology transfer institutions which try to build on the experiences in Western Europe and act as regional innovation managers and catalysts esp. in the field of sustainable technologies. For REGENER these CEE intermediaries have identified 3 pilot end-users each and will use their good knowledge of the regional business and research environment to assist feasibility studies, identify and approach supply chain partners and act as dissemination partners. REGENER will start with 6 technical feasibility studies to assess the potential for renewable energy use (lead by Prof. Schnitzer and supported by local researchers), which will be reviewed by the 4 Austrian SMEs in terms of cost and benefits of implementation. The latter will also specify requirements for potential partners in the CEE regions which should support production and assembling, deliver services for installation and act as multipliers to raise awareness among potential regional end-users. The two CEE intermediaries then will identify and approach businesses by technology oriented supply- and demand-side market analyses and dissemination events with direct business-to-business contacts, in order to lay ground for sustainable production and service networks across the involved regions; furthermore some of the businesses identified could become RTD project partners eg. in the EU 7th framework programme.
For the CEE region SMEs involved in REGENER will lead to increased innovative capacity by learning state-of-the-art technological and organizational standards in the fast growing field of renewable energy use. The Austrian SMEs will learn to adapt their solutions to these markets, technological requirements and cultural specifics of the regional suppliers and partners. Furthermore the intermediaries will learn about ways and methods to address SMEs and thus will strengthen their role in the individual innovative milieu.
StatusFinished
Effective start/end date1/10/0731/03/09