The Designing Climate Ecosystems Conference and the EIT Awareness Day was organised by the Cyprus University of Technology in Nicosia at the Royal Hall, on the 26th and 27th of June. Attendees represented all sides of the Knowledge Triangle – Business, Education and Research – and this event raised awareness about best practices from around the world on how Cyprus can be transformed into a Climate Innovation & Entrepreneurship Hub and a reference point between Europe and the MENA Region among relevant national stakeholders. The conference began with welcoming speeches from Frances Lanitou and Nicoletta Kythreotou , representatives for the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Ministry of Agriculture, Rural Development and Environment. Some of the keynote speakers of the conference were Kirsten Dunlop (Climate-KIC‘s CEO), Christopher Lee (Climate-KIC Australia), Anna Nagamine (Okinawa University-Japan), Meir Dardashti (IdealityRoads-Israel), Christina Karapataki(Breakthrough Energy Ventures) and Kyriacos Kokkinos (National Chief Scientist-Cyprus).
The EIT Awareness Day was carried out the second day and it aimed at raising awareness about the EIT Community, its activities and, in particular, about the cooperation opportunities among relevant national stakeholders. Chrysanthos Fakas, Board Member of Nicosia Municipality and Themis Christophidou, European Commission’s Director-General for Education, Youth, Sport and Culture took part in this session before an introduction to the EIT by Alice Fiser, EIT’s Head of Unit Relations and Communications. Afterwards, the Knowledge Innovation Communities (KICs) were introduced one-by-one by their representatives. Our colleague, Elvira Domingo, RIS Programme Manager, presented EIT Food's objectives and programmes.
After a networking lunch, Harris Georgiades, Minister of Finance gave a keynote speech. This speech was followed by a panel discussion on how the EIT Community can assist in enhancing innovation capacity in Cyprus. The panel consisted of Elpida Kervanou-Papailiou, Former EIT Governing Board Member, Anthi Charalambous, Head of Energy & Environment Division at OEB, Kirsten Dunlop CEO of Climate-KIC, Philippos Patsalis, Head of the National Council for Research and Innovation and Alexandros Charalambides, Associate Professor at Cyprus University of Technology. The discussion was moderated by Menelaos Menelaou, Executive Director at Youth Board of Cyprus. The last session of the event was the closing remarks made by Androulla Vassiliou, Former European Commissioner for Education, Culture, Multilingualism and Youth.