The recent LEAP-RE Stakeholder Forum, hosted in Kigali, Rwanda, and online from 10 to 13 October gathered more than 400 participants! Good connections, a sense of community and a common passion for advancing renewable energy research & innovation at the service of energy access made for a succesful event!
Opening statements by high-level officials have been the occasion to recall the tremendous challenges we are facing, with climate change – the planet’s poorest countries often being the hardest-hit – and the remaning lack of energy access in many regions. High level policy discussions around the Climate Change and Sustainable Energy partnership and the AU-EU Innovation Agenda particularly stressed the need for cooperation between Africa and Europe to achieve SDG 7 “Ensure access to affordable, reliable, sustainable and modern energy for all”.
Key Forum Highlights
The forum has been the occasion to share recent news from the LEAP-RE Community, including the latest results and insights from the 31 projects in our LEAP-RE Project Portfolio. The Forum witnessed the launch of 10 projects from the second LEAP-RE Call for Research and Innovation projects: D3T4H2S, MIDINA, OPTIMG, RCLIB, REPTES, SHE, SmartAPV-Fruit, SWITCH, BIOTHEREP and Vil2Bio. The new projects cover some of the LEAP-RE thematic priorities, including the Water-Energy-Food nexus, agrivoltaic solutions, green hydrogen, mini and micro-grids digitalization, and biomass transformation.
Highlights from the Forum also include thematic sessions on several key topics (Minigrids and local energy systems, geothermal energy and its local applications, energy modelling, and the role of technology in the transition with a focus on clean cooking, advanced materials and LCA), and several workshops on scientific writing, business models and interactive decision-making tools. Another flagship part of the Forum was our second RESchool, which brought together some 25 students from both continents, with the aim to train tomorrow’s researchers and provide them with a space to learn and share experiences together. A site visit to Anne Heyman Solar Fields, a solar plant powering the energy transition in Rwanda, was the final highlight how what was a very rich and busy week for participants.
Towards the long term partnership
Synergies are sought with established groups and other programmes as we develop a long term partnership in direct connection with the AU-EU Innovation Agenda and the Climate Change and Sustainable Energy Partnership (CCSE). LEAP-RE advisory board members and programme beneficiaries will be actively engaged in the design of the future platform! Building on the outcomes of the projects in the LEAP-RE Portfolio and on the meaningful connections created between researchers and with other initatives are forming the basis of a lasting endeavour to advance renewable energy research and leverage innovation to improve access to renewable energy sources.
Keep in Touch with Fellow Participants with the LEAP-RE Online Community Platform
Continue exchanging with your fellow LEAP-RE community members after the LEAP-RE Stakeholder Forum. The Platform is a space for Renewable Energy research and innovation stakeholders from both Africa and Europe to exchange, share knowledge, and collaborate on common opportunities. All the presentations made during the event can also be downloaded through the LEAP-RE App. Log in or create your profile and start sharing updates with the community!
Recordings: Watch the Forum highlights!
Some of the Forum’s sessions have been recorded. If you have missed the Forum, or would simply like to rewatch some of the sessions, you can do so now on the LEAP-RE YouTube channel.
Download the Presentations
Mid-term presentation of the first cohort of projects funded by the LEAP-RE open calls for projects:
Clean Cooking & Biomass
PV Cells & Resources
Recylcing & Modelisation
Kick-off presentations of the second cohort of projects funded by the LEAP-RE open calls for projects:
Research to Policy
- From Scientific Research to EU Policy Implementation, Natalia Caldés-Gómez, EC DG INTPA
- From Scientific Research to EU Policy Implementation in Sub-Saharan Africa: practices to support the DG International Partnership, Sandor Szabo
- Leveraging the Scientific Value of the Joint AU-EU Research in LEAP-RE, Emanuela Colombo, POLIMI
- Innovation Landscape for Renewable Powered Systems, Arina Anisie IRENA
- From Research to Policy: Case Study PURAMS, Sandra Banda Strathmore University
- Renewables for African Agriculture: Integrating Modelling Excellence and Robust Business Models, Giacomo Falchetta IIASA
The remaining presentations will be continuously added to the Knowledge Repository of the LEAP-RE Online Community Platform and to this page.
All the pictures of the event can be found here.