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KTH Energy Platform welcomes Sweden’s EU presidency and the new KTH president

President Anders Söderholm with Lina Bertling Tjernberg et al.
The new KTH president Anders Söderholm participated in the event "Future Skills for a Sustainable Energy System", arranged by the KTH Energy Platform at the end of 2022. Photo: Mikael Sjöberg
Published Jan 17, 2023

Energy supply is still in focus and the KTH Energy Platform wants to be a platform for knowledge and contribute to innovative and strategic solutions. The platform director comments the situation in the first semester interview of the year.

Hi Lina Bertling Tjernberg, KTH Energy Platform Director. A new year is underway; what are you looking forward to in 2023?

Portrait photo of Lina Bertling Tjernberg
Lina Bertling Tjernberg, KTH Energy Platform Director. Photo: Ateljé Uggla

“The year got off to a great start with Sweden taking over the presidency of the EU Council of Ministers. For me, the year kicked off with a roundtable discussion with Director General Ditte Juul Jørgensen at the European Commission’s Directorate-General for Energy, (DG ENER), where businesses, authorities and industry organisations gathered to discuss steps taken by the EU to address the energy crisis and planning for long-term climate goals.

“KTH is involved in a range of activities during the Swedish presidency, including the University Alliance Stockholm Trio  with participation in the Sustainable horizons: Does our future depend on science?  conference."

“In the coming six months, it’s important that we as energy researchers are ready to contribute by sharing our knowledge in various contexts. Energy issues will continue to top the political agenda in Europe and it’s crucial that decisions are knowledge-based.”

As a researcher, it’s important to take an active role in public debate on the energy supply; which issues are particularly relevant today?

“We recently received a highly positive signal from the government that they are proposing a change in the law  to remove obstacles to the wider use of nuclear power. This is an important step to remove barriers, andmake it possible to evaluate and compare different alternatives and mixtures of electricity generation . After an extended period of polarised debate about different types of electrical power generation, steps are now being taken to compare electrical power types on equal terms and thus form a basis on which to base decisions on resource optimisation. This is where research comes in. We conduct broad-based research into energy as the energy system of the future will need a variety of technologies and system solutions.”

“At the same time, it’s important to strike a balance between participation in external events and our own research. As usual, the spring term has a strong focus on research and new calls for proposals. The Swedish Energy Agency has announced several calls for proposals  with deadlines as early as February."

You’re planning several events under the auspices of the Energy Platform this year; tell us more!

“On 11 May we’re joint-hosting an event with KTH Materials Platform , with a focus on energy and materials research. During the event, we’ll demonstrate how important new materials are for the energy supply of the future. We’re also planning a workshop on solar energy."

“After that, we’ll be looking forward to this year’s edition of the KTH Energy Dialogue , which is planned for 30th November – so save the date now!”

You were inducted as a fellow of the Royal Swedish Academy of Engineering Sciences (IVA)  at the end of last year; will that strengthen research collaboration further?

“My ambition is to put some extra energy into strengthening the collaboration between the Energy Platform and the IVA’s Electrical Engineering department. We are already planning for the joint platform day at IVA on 11 May. I also see opportunities for more exciting collaborations that strengthen collaboration and contribute to research."

“One of IVA’s important initiatives is their 100 List, which highlights research projects in climate change, energy supply, welfare technology, cyber security and crisis preparedness. Make sure you apply by the end of February  to increase your contact with the business world and collaboration with society.”

The year also starts with new management at KTH with the arrival of Anders Söderholm as KTH President  on 1st December. Have you already started working together?

“We had the pleasure of inviting our new president to open our last event of 2022, Future Skills for a Sustainable Energy System . The President has already shown great commitment to our research and our research environments.

“Due to the faculty’s expertise and our extensive contacts with business and society, we’ve had fantastic opportunities to contribute to technological breakthroughs and system solutions for a future sustainable, resilient and independent energy supply in Europe!”

Text: Magnus Trogen Pahlén