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Energy and Innovation: École Polytechnique’s researchers take the floor on “Research Thursdays”

Energy Communities

Each first Thursday of the month since October 2014, researchers present the work carried our by all 20 laboratories of the prestigious École Polytechnique in Palaiseau, France. This will to better communicate on skills and recent significant results is clearly asserted by Patrick Le Quéré, Deputy Vice President for Academic Affairs and Research of École Polytechnique since 2012 and former Director of the Interdisciplinary Energy Program of the CNRS (French National Centre for Scientific Research)

What are the thematic “Research Thursdays” of École Polytechnique about?

Patrick Le Quéré: “They are in the form of breakfast-debates, a cycle of meetings corresponding to the 8 strategic research themes which structure all research work at École Polytechnique. During each meeting, two or three researchers of École Polytechnique, experts in their respective spheres of activity, review challenges and progresses made with their on-going work. This opening out results from a desire to let the French scientific press –too often focused on international expansion- know about École Polytechnique’s researchers latest advances. However, we also wish to spread information more widely, which is why our meetings -reserved mainly to the press- are also opened to our partners.”

What is the proportion of energy-dedicated research at Polytechnique?

Patrick Le Quéré: “Approximately one third of École Polytechnique’s potential is somehow dedicated to researches on energy, whether for its production, storage or distribution. This applies equally to the reliability and sustainability of materials dedicated to nuclear energy generation, electrochemical or mechanical storage, researches on new materials, assessment of wind or solar resources or optimizing distribution networks… As to sustainable energy, the École Polytechnique, jointly with its partners, is at the heart of the creation of the Institut pour la Transition Energétique (Institute for Energy Transition) with a pioneer laboratory known as PICM (Laboratoire de Physique des Interfaces et des Couches Minces), the Physics of Interfaces and Thin Films Laboratory. All this research activity is supported by three Chairs: “21st Century Energies” “Advanced Concepts in Photovoltaics” and “Sustainable Development” and underpins the REST Master (Renewable Energy Science & TechnologyMaster), a growing international success.”

How does École Polytechnique foster entrepreneurship?

Patrick Le Quéré: the appointment of Jacques Biot as President and Chairman of the Board of Polytechnique, in July 2013, built a strong momentum towards entrepreneurship. As an experienced industry professional as well as the creator and developer of innovative training programs, he brought to fruition this momentum by developing the Entrepreneurship and Innovation Division, which is based on a global program to educate, train and support entrepreneurs. A 2500 m2 building dedicated to business and innovation shall open by spring 2015 and will allow the co-localization of a whole entrepreneurial ecosystem encompassing training, coaching and experimentation spaces as well as premises for start-ups.

Are there any specialized masters in management aimed at innovators?

Patrick Le Quéré: “There are three different masters in management facilitated by professors-researchers of the École that are very popular among students. They offer three different approaches of innovation and business creation: Master's degree in Technological innovation and Entrepreneurship (IT&E), Master's degree in Project - Innovation - Design (Projet - Innovation – Conception: PIC) and Master's degree in network industries and the digital economy (Industries de Réseau et Économie Numérique - IREN). We have also formed a partnership with Stanford University to provide on-going training to business creators and innovators: Stanford Ignite –Polytechnique”.

Contact for “Research Thursdays”:

Alice Tschudy :

Copyright photos: École Polytechnique

Source: Axelle de Guelz

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