Press release CTI, December 15, 2016
Swiss Competence Centers for Energy Research (SCCER) have been a success. All eight SCCERs will enter a second budgetary period in 2017. At the end of November, the Presidium of the Commission for Technology and Innovation (CTI) approved all eight applications. As part of the ‘Coordinated Energy Research Switzerland’ action plan, CTI has allocated a total of CHF 119.7 million over the next four years in support of SCCERs. In joint activities, cooperation between the various SCCERs will be intensified.
The first budgetary period of CTI’s energy support programme will come to an end on 31 December 2016. The Federal Assembly has approved the Federal Council’s proposal to continue support for SCCERs for another four years. The CTI Presidium has now approved all eight applications for the SCCERs established in the previous budgetary period:
Biomass for Swiss Energy Future (SCCER BIOSWEET)
The work of the eight SCCER in the fist budgetary period has been successful: at the end of 2016, a total of over 1,100 researchers were working in these SCCERs, publishing around 750 scientific publications. In addition, over 200 new continuing training courses in the field of energy were launched in 2016. The 2013-2016 budgetary period was mainly devoted to setting up individual SCCERs. This work will continue over the next four years. In addition, priority will be given to projects carried out by several SCCERs working together (referred to as ‘Joint Activities’). These projects are intended to reinforce interdisciplinary cooperation between the various SCCERs. ‘This further networking is a key factor since it will have a leveraging effect when SCCERs begin pooling together their resources in the area of modelling, scenario building or social acceptance,’ explains CTI President Walter Steinlin.
Around CHF 112 million have been allocated to the eight SCCERs for the second budgetary period and around CHF 7.7 million for six approved Joint Activities. CTI’s mandate to create and establish SCCERs is based on the ‘Coordinated Energy Research Switzerland’ action plan, which covers a period of eight years up to the end of 2020. SCCERs now face the challenge of achieving self-sufficiency in their activities starting from 2020. ‘The Confederation has only given the initial impetus. By 2020, SCCERs need to have developed the necessary know-how and begin working with the private sector on solutions for the future of energy,’ summarises President Steinlin.
Swiss Competence Centers for Energy Research (SCCERs)
As part of the ‘Coordinated Energy Research Switzerland’ action plan, CTI has been tasked with developing, funding and managing a series of research competence centres that will be linked together across several university campuses. A total of eight SCCRs were launched in 2013/2014 to focus on seven areas of action. SCCERs look for solutions to technological, social and political challenges associated with the energy transition. CTI is part of the Federal Department of Economic Affairs, Education and Research (EAER).