Public-private partnerships for system change
The energy sector is in the midst of a major transformation. As Ontario and the globe face complex issues such as population growth, climate change and aging infrastructure, there is a pressing need for sustainable energy solutions. Technology innovation is crucial to solving these challenges. However, without systemic change – regulations, policy and energy systems at large – the path to adoption of innovative technologies is obstructed. System change is essential to foster the adoption of innovative energy technologies – herein lies the mission of the Advanced Energy Centre (the Centre).
The Centre is a public-private mechanism that seeks to facilitate the adoption of innovative energy technologies and to leverage those successes and experiences in international markets. The public-private partnership model of the Centre is crucial to its success.
The energy system is comprised of vendors, buyers, regulators, each with their unique set of interests. Within this context, there is a need for a neutral third party to facilitate engagement between key players and provide an impartial space for collaboration. While vendors typically approach buyers with the objective to sell a product, at the Centre these players can come together “off-the-record” and collaboratively generate solutions to today’s energy problems. By existing in a space between the public and private sectors, the AEC breaks down barriers and agendas between different stakeholders to realize mutual benefits derived from integrated solutions.
” The Advanced Energy Centre is a catalyst for solutions that seek to promote the adoption of energy innovation more quickly and at lower risk. “
– Ron Dizy, Managing Director, Advanced Energy Centre
The Advanced Energy Centre has strong support from a diverse set of actors, which remain crucial to its success as a neutral third-party in the energy space. The founding members of the AEC are the Ontario Ministry of Energy, the MaRS Discovery District, CapGemini and Siemens. With the support of public and private partners, the Centre’s capacity to facilitate change is substantial. By working with government and industry players, the Centre is able to significantly reduce risks associated with innovation and facilitate necessary information sharing between key stakeholders to bring about change.
Today’s energy challenges are not solvable by a single player. We simply cannot rely upon governments, technology companies, large industry, or academics to address them alone. The Advanced Energy Centre recognizes that Ontario’s success in the energy sector relies on collaboration. We offer a unique platform for holistic sustainable solutions to these complex human problems.
Jesika is the International Program Manager for the Advanced Energy Centre. She works with MaRS cleantech advisors and experts from academia, industry and government to support the development and adoption of clean energy technologies in local and international markets. See more…
Kathleen Gnocato is Manager of the Utility Transformation Program for the Advanced Energy Centre at MaRS. See more…