Innovation and Sustainability for a new world

Published on Friday, 5 August 2016

After decades of stagnation, the energy system is changing at an increasingly rapid pace, thanks to such factors such as technological evolution, a force that can drastically change entire business segments, while opening up great opportunities for development.

Which is why, in line with its Open Power strategic positioning, Enel has placed sustainability and innovation at the heart of its business strategy. These two factors are fundamental to help meet some of the most important challenges the world is facing. Which is why we have coined the term Innovability – by combining innovation and sustainability – and created a dedicated function within our organisation.

Our commitment has won us numerous international awards. The Enel Group has recently been reconfirmed in the FTSE4Good, an index that measures corporate behaviour in areas such as governance, environmental protection, respect for human rights and the fight against corruption.Our company has been cited in Greenpeace Italy’s 2015 Social and Sustainability Report as a positive example for its commitment to combat climate change and to achieve carbon neutrality by 2050. “For the first time, an energy giant is committed to climate and renewable energy policies that are headed in the right direction”, says the document, and the convergence of views between Enel and Greenpeace “constitutes an important starting point to work together on common areas for the development of economic, social and environmental interests, from an advanced global sustainability standpoint”.

In order to offer a speedy, innovative response to changes in society and customer needs, we must open up to outside contributions. Which is why we have embraced the Open Innovation model, based on a paradigm of openness that ranges from startups and large businesses, to universities, research centres and individual innovative projects. At the COP21 in Paris, we announced our partnership with Nissan for the development of a Vehicle-to-Grid System (V2G), which will enable e-cars to function as actual “mobile stations”.

Last year witnessed the holding of the second phase of INCENSe (INternet Cleantech ENablers Spark), an acceleration programme dedicated to start-ups in the clean technology sector. Through the initiative, which was coordinated by Enel and Endesa, eight million euros were granted to the most interesting proposals from European and Israeli start-ups to make energy consumption smarter and more efficient.

Our Spanish subsidiary developed the Open Innovation platform Endesa Energy Challenges, through which “Endesa Datathon” was launched, in the search for new added-value ideas on the Spanish market through Big Data, as well as “Endesa Hackathon”, during which 40 developers, programmers and designers collaborated in devising solutions for optimising energy consumption.