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Responding to Climate Change 2011

Home | Education & Research | Uppsala University
 

Responding today, tomorrow
and far into the future

Uppsala University

Wave power - capturing the energy of the sea; source: www.seabased.com
Wave power - capturing the energy of the sea; source: www.seabased.com
 
Founded in 1477, Uppsala is the oldest university in Scandinavia. World-class research and first-rate education of global use to society, business and culture make Uppsala University one of northern Europe’s most highly ranked universities and one of the 100 finest in the world. Its schools include science, technology, social sciences, humanities and medicine.

The last century has seen a technological advancement that has resulted in a better living standard for much of the world’s population. Still, the world faces potentially devastating problems including population growth, climate change, and natural resource depletion. Analysis of these problems is not enough. We must find solutions that function both technologically as well as being practical in a socio-economic and environmental context. In this process, Uppsala University can contribute with knowledge and innovation.

Interdisciplinary cooperation between researchers provides exceptional opportunities when it comes to transforming cutting-edge scientific knowledge into new products and services for everyday life, including in the energy sector. Several new Uppsala University energy spin-off companies have the potential to contribute to tomorrow’s energy systems, such as:

  • Seabased, founded by Professor Mats Leijon, is a company that develops commercial wave power. The wave power plant on the west coast of Sweden is already delivering electricity to consumers;
  • Q-Cells makes thin-film solar cells based on the compound semiconductor known as CIGS; and,
  • Vertical Wind is manufacturing a new generation of wind turbines directly driven by a vertical axis.

Together we are strong

The university plays a leading role in several national initiatives in the renewable energy field. STandUp for Energy is a joint venture between Uppsala University, KTH Royal Institute of Technology, the Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences and Luleå University of Technology. The partnership is a result of the Swedish Government’s commitment to high quality research in areas of strategic importance to society and the business sector. It brings together leading research groups to address the most critical energy problems. Research is focused on renewable production of energy, integration into the electricity network, electric propulsion and hybrid vehicles and energy systems.

InnoEnergy is an initiative from the European Institute of Innovation and Technology to promote economic growth through innovation. As part of this, Uppsala is collaborating with KTH and companies, ABB and Vattenfall, to achieve a breakthrough in electrical energy storage, and develop conditions, technologies and services for the actualisation of smart grids.

Another example of Uppsala University’s commitment to global challenges is CSD Uppsala (Uppsala Centre for Sustainable Development). Based on an alliance with the Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, this increased interdisciplinary cooperation extends work around sustainable development from global, regional, and local perspectives.

Frontline research

Explicitly identified and supported education and research within the university includes energy, natural disasters and sustainable development. These areas address common goals, providing the scope for extensive synergy effects and integrated scientific, technical and socio-economic studies.

  • The Baltic University Programme: as a network of 225 universities and higher education institutes throughout the Baltic Sea, this programme supports how universities work towards democratic, peaceful and sustainable development.
  • CEMUS: this range of courses on environmental issues and sustainable development are student initiated, but staff monitored to ensure excellence.
  • MSc Earth Sciences: the Department of Earth Sciences at Uppsala University is one of the most comprehensive academic departments of its kind in Europe.
  • MSc Sustainable Development: this is an interdisciplinary programme with students and teachers from many different subject areas.

Uppsala University is a comprehensive research university committed to interdisciplinary cooperation. We are well equipped to find solutions to the problems the world is facing, not just today, but also tomorrow and far into the future.

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Uppsala University
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