Submitted by: Bogazici University
Implemented country: Turkey
Title: Networking for a Sustainable Energy Future
Burak Demirel and his wife live in Istanbul where he researches and teaches biogas technology at the Institute for Environmental Sciences at Bogazici University, one of Turkey’s leading universities. The objective is to work green and sustainably, a goal that is also very important to Burak Demirel, a graduate in the field of environmental engineering. As an expert he well knows that the future belongs to renewable energies and that solutions are in high demand for a more careful use of our limited resources in order to avoid jeopardizing our children’s future. For Burak this is a matter of course, but for most other people in his country, including even highly educated ones, it is not.
This is why education and creating awareness are the keys to change as far as a more sustainable energy future is concerned. What is needed is networking and the means for better networking. So Burak founded RENET, a network for renewable energies between Turkish and European universities. Europe is a very important partner, so the first step was to cross-link German, Swedish, and Turkish universities and educational institutions with a focus on renewable energies, particularly refuse incineration, solar energy, and eco fuels. The medium-term goal is joint research, know-how and technology transfer and joint work on legal frameworks for renewable energies in the European Union. Target groups on both ends of the network are university and high school students as well as researchers.
RENET works through permanent contacts and joint activities between partner universities, student and teacher exchange programs, presentations of best practice models, and the development and implementation of training programs. Other important activities are networking on behalf of better information exchange, performing studies and analyses as well as working papers, but also organizing summer schools, for example in Istanbul, creating project web pages, and organizing seminars. Annual international conferences such as those in Stockholm, Hamburg, and Istanbul with the focus on renewable energies, climate change, bio mass, etc. help support the exchange of research and know-how. RENET also focuses on cultural aspects and helps foster mutual understanding for improved bilateral relationships. Financial support for RENET is provided by the EU as well as Turkey. In his spare time, Burak Demirel enjoys soccer and watching movies.
“Provide a sustainable future!”