Social Innovation to Tackle Fuel Poverty European Summit

The best practices awarded in Rome

Ashoka and the Schneider Electric Foundation present the most innovative solutions to address the issue of fuel poverty and to promote energy sustainability in Europe, at the final summit of the 2017-2018 “Social Innovation to Tackle Fuel Poverty” programme, on the 24th and 25th May 2018, in Rome

In November 2017, 15 social entrepreneurs were selected by the Schneider Electric Foundation and Ashoka, under the aegis of the Fondation de France, and in partnership with Enel, for the 2017-2018 “Social Innovation to Tackle Fuel Poverty” programme, launched in June 2017 to select the most creative and systems- changing solutions to tackle fuel poverty and promote energy sustainability in Europe.

The 15 selected social entrepreneurs will gather in Rome for a two-days acceleration programme, and the 5 most innovative projects will be presented at Istituto dell’Enciclopedia Italiana in Rome, on Thursday the 24th May at 5 pm. The Schneider Electric Foundation and Ashoka will introduce the effort made to promote energy sustainability in Europe and discuss the best practices currently available, with the speakers: Arnaud Mourot (Ashoka Europe Co-Director), Alessandro Valera (Ashoka Italy Director), Gilles Vermot Desroches (General Delegate of Schneider Electric Foundation), Fabrizio Furbini (Enel) and Marylin Smith (The Energy Action Project). The 5 most outstanding social entrepreneurs will be awarded with an extra grant to further develop their projects. The event is open to the public. Here the link to the registration.

Fuel poverty is a major issue in Europe, whereby tens of millions of people struggle every day to ensure adequate heating, light, and cooking power in their dwelling at an affordable price. This severely affects their health and wellbeing and ultimately has a negative impact on society. Ashoka and the Schneider Electric Foundation are building a community including a diverse cohort of social innovators from Germany, Greece, Italy, Portugal, and Spain, committed to tackling fuel poverty and promoting energy sustainability in their countries and in Europe.

The event is part of a two-day European Summit, not open to the public, that gather the 15 social entrepreneurs working on fuel poverty who were selected for an intensive 12-week advisory process: Marlene Potthoff, Marco Borghesi and Stephanie Kosbab from Germany; Apostolos Dimopoulos and Argyro Stavroulaki from Greece; Marina Varvesi, Giulia Detomati, Alberto Gastaldo and Fabio Gerosa from Italy; António Bello, Nuno Brito Jorge and João Pedro Gouveia from Portugal; Cecilia Foronda, Jose Luis Lopez Fernández and Juan Carlos Sancristán from Spain. The mentors that accompanied the entrepreneurs during the advisory process and additional Strategy Thought Partners selected for the event will take part in the summit to provide the entrepreneurs with feedbacks and suggestions on their scaling-up strategies.

The second day, Friday 25th, will be entirely dedicated to the social entrepreneurs. Delegates from Schneider Electric will introduce their Fuel Poverty Program and the different support tools it makes available to the social innovators. To follow, Marylin Smith from the Energy Action Project (EnAct) will present the EU Energy Poverty Observatory, and will held a lesson on the creation of a European community of social entrepreneurs on energy poverty through social media. Finally, Giulia Sergi from Ashoka Globalizer will conduct a workshop on Smart Networking. These two days of powerful exchange will elicit experiences that help the social innovators to solve critical issues as well as to begin to build connections and opportunities to collaborate for an advanced common cause.