Wednesday, 12 August 2015

Sustainable Chemistry for Life - The Role of Chemistry in the European Bioeconomy

The Thirteenth Congress of the European Chemical Regions Network (ECRN) brings together decision-makers, industry representatives, researchers and stakeholders to exchange experiences on policies and good practices on sustainability, chemistry and the bioeconomy on 8 and 9 October in Novara and Milan, Italy. The discussions will be enriched by a ‘Market of Ideas’ introducing regional activities, innovative products and projects from chemical regions across Europe. You are invited to join the event, present your activities and be inspired by others!

The ECRN event will be organised in two parts. The first day will be held in Novara and the second day in Milan. The first day will focus on sustainable innovations and technological advancements in the field of biotechnology and bioeconomy and the second day will address policies and future perspectives.

Discussions will be linked to the broad themes of Expo Milan 2015, “Feeding the Planet, Energy for Life” and enriched by a “market of ideas” introducing regional experiences, best practices and projects that illustrate the variety of activities taking place across Europe's chemical regions.

The Market of Ideas
The afternoon of the first Congress day (8 October) is dedicated to presenting and exhibiting examples of regional projects and innovative chemical companies and clusters. Representatives from projects and organisations will have a chance share their stories with other participants. The Market of Ideas is an open, interactive session for networking and finding new partners and contacts. It provides regional and industrial actors, SMEs, (inter)regional projects, research institutes, clusters and other organizations with an opportunity to showcase their initiatives and success stories and build bridges across the value chain.

Each presenter will have their own space for networking and meeting other interested participants. Beyond brokerage or matchmaking, participants can learn from each others’ experiences and find new contacts. In addition to networking between individuals, a moderator will draw attention to interesting initiatives in the market with on-the-spot mini-interviews.

Participants should prepare a brief abstract (~ 250 words) on their project, product or organisation for the congress materials and organize any supporting materials you might need for your “market stall” – such as roll-up(s), flyers, brochures, reports, laptop presentations etc. - to promote their activities.

Reasons to participate in the ECRN Congress Market of Ideas include:
  • Benefiting from a platform for networking opportunities and meeting valuable new contacts (decision-makers and stakeholders from authorities, academia and industry)
  • Gaining visibility by having your project or organization presented in the congress materials and on the event website
  • Using the opportunity to participate in the entire Congress programme (in Novara and Milan), the Congress reception, and visit the major EXPO 2015 in Milan.
  • Participating in and presenting your activities is free – all you need to do is register!
Participating and presenting in the Market of Ideas is free of charge, but advance registration is required. Registration is being handled by the ECRN Secretariat in Brussels and the office can also provide additional information to interested potential participants. The secretariat can be contacted via email.

More details on the Conference can be found on the ECRN website and the Congress programme can be downloaded here.

SusChem and the bioeconomy
The opening ECRN session will highlight the ways in which chemistry and chemical innovations can enhance and contribute to the bioeconomy and sustainability. Chemistry is a key source for sustainable solutions and future challenges on issues like sustainable feeding or biobased solutions for a circular economy are very important for the chemical industry.

The SusChem Strategic Innovation and Research Agenda (SIRA) has a dedicated chapter on ‘A Sustainable and Inclusive Bioeconomy’ and SusChem is an essential link between the chemical industry, industrial biotechnology and stakeholders in the bioeconomy.

The platform is actively involved in two large and relevant PPPs between the European Commission and industry launched in 2014:
SusChem contributes to the alignment of both initiatives. The interface between BBI and SPIRE is the provision and use of biobased platform chemicals. In addition, both PPPs may support projects using biotechnological conversion processes and specific improvements of biotechnology processes may be eligible for funding through either PPP. SusChem will enable the coherence of ongoing and future funding initiatives and the deployment of flagship projects that demonstrate technological leadership and that Europe is a globally competitive location to invest in the bioeconomy.

For more information on SusChem's Bioeconomy activities, contact Cefic Innovation Manager for the Bioeconomy Flavio Benedito.

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