Wednesday, 13 October 2010
Chemical Innovation at EP Summit
SusChem’s ideas on a value chain approach to innovation were to the fore at the 2nd European Innovation Summit held at the European Parliament on 11 – 14 October.
Two SusChem board members - Prof Rodney Townsend of the RSC (below) and Gernot Klotz, executive director R&I at Cefic - took part in a lively debate on Sustainable Production for the Quality of Life on Tuesday 12 October. The debate was hosted by Herbert Reul MEP, Chair of the parliament’s Industry, Research and Energy Committee (ITRE).
The fresh ‘SusChem thinking’ on innovation and sustainability offered by the chemical community stood out in this debate, which was moderated by journalist Alex Puissant.
Gernot Klotz emphasized that innovation was all about creating value for society from ideas – not necessarily research - and that there was a clear need to speed up innovation in Europe and play to our strengths. “If you are already leading, you can dominate the race,” he said. Playing catch-up is not such a good option.
Rodney Townsend agreed saying that SusChem was uniquely placed in Europe to be able to take a “step back” and look at the whole value chain to identify where innovation can help along the chain and help provide the innovative drive. Stimulating simultaneous innovation at a number of places long the chain could really accelerate innovation and reduce the time to get ideas into the marketplace.