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Energy and sustainability

Energy and sustainability

Seeking energy solutions to achieve the trilemma of secure supply, affordability, and environmental sustainability.


The knowledge, skills and attitude important to thrive in the fields of energy and sustainability. Energy presents a fundamental challenge shared by cities and regions across Europe as well as globally, characterised by the ‘trilemma’ of seeking to achieve secure supply, affordability, and environmental sustainability. However, at the regional level, there are opportunities to revolutionise production, distribution and consumption. Approaches should work with the assets of each region. For example, regions that are positioned close to capture energy (wind, sun, hydropower, biofuel from crops or waste) or locations that are well-positioned to areas of great demand (industrial hubs, adjacent cities) can develop smart infrastructure accordingly.

A key opportunity for rurban areas is to use smart systems to decentralise energy supply and take back the ownership of localised energy production, for example through ground source heat pumps (GSHP), wind power or solar. This can enable more remote locations to secure their own clean energy supply. Rural areas offer great opportunities for solving energy and sustainability problems.Tackling this trilemma involves maximising efficiency across the system, from the generation of clean energy to power buildings and transportation, the storage and distribution of energy when and where it is needed, and the smart consumption by end-users.

Popular challenges and micro-modules



Inclusive public spaces

The ability to design social areas and public spaces that are open and inclusive to all. The knowledge of inclusivity and key groups affected. And the ability to plan, develop, and create open spaces in cooperation with communities, clients, and other professionals.


Inclusive policies

The ability to develop and implement policies in organizations to promote a positive, inclusive environment with equality of opportunity for all. The knowledge and awareness of the various needs and perspectives of minority groups (ethnicities, genders, religious groups, etc.).


Sustainable urbanization

The ability to integrate elements of sustainability and balanced resource consumption in the development of urban infrastructure. This involves the awareness of principles, policies and regulations, knowledge of how to apply them in different contexts, a mindset for sustainable development, and adept ability to maneuver through complex stakeholder dynamics in the context of urbanisation.


Disaster risk reduction

The ability to develop and apply risk management processes to prevent and respond to disasters and emergencies. The knowledge of potential risks, compliance regulations, and actions for contingency plans. The proactive attitude to identify risks and develop solutions to protect and reduce negative impact.


Environmental impact

The ability to minimise impact of activities on the surrounding environment through assessing work practices, applying policies for protection, and employing sustainable waste and disposal practices. The knowledge of environmental regulations and sustainable practices and and ability to identify potential areas of environmental damage. The mindset of long-term sustainability in the development of practices and the feeling of responsibility to improve.

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