SEYN Academies

With over two years lifespan, 2015 has been an important year for SEYN’s development. SEYN has managed to grow bigger, to increase its visibility to youngsters around Europe interested in sustainable energy and to engage more enthusiastic people into its decision-making processes.

The organization of the two SEYN academies in Solta island in Croatia (26.7-01.08.2015) and in in Crete, Greece (27.9-3.10.2015) resulted after common preparations between the HBS Greece, the Green European Foundation, UNDP Croatia, REScoop, the Institute for Political Ecology and the Friends of the Earth Croatia.

The academies involved highly motivated participants with different backgrounds from all over Europe and the world: sociologists, ethnologists, economists, environmental engineers, political scientists, designers, architects and many others from Chile, Pakistan, Nepal, Germany, United Kingdom, Czech Rebublic, Serbia, Croatia, Poland, Portugal, Spain, Greece, Montenegro, Slovenia, Slovakia, Cyprus, FYROM and Bulgaria.

SEYN arose the interest of the participants with the intensive and multi-level programme of the academies as they offered the opportunity to use SEYN’s platform to gain knowledge, exchange ideas, cooperate transnational and make new friendships. The programme of the academies consisted of training on the principles and structure of energy cooperatives, energy and environmental campaings and community engangement in Europe and rest of the world, financing opportunities through EU programmes or other tools such as crowdfunding, DIY renewable energy appliances and visits to local renewable energy and agriculture units and actors. Also, through the support of the various tutors, the asset mapping methodology and the business canvas models, participants developed their own project ideas in working-groups. The academies concluded with 10 concrete project proposals, which were presented in plenum.

UNDP Croatia and the Institute for Political Ecology were the main organizers of the first SEYN academy in Solta. HBS Greece with the support of its European partners UNDP Croatia and REScoop and its Greek partners, the Technical University of Crete, the Orthodox Academy of Crete and the Cooperative Wind of Renewal organized the SEYN Crete Academy at the Mediterranean Agronomic Institute of Chania.

SEYN Crete Academy

SEYN Crete’s academy program aimed to raise the awareness of the participants on the inclusion of the local community in local RES projects through the establishment of energy cooperatives for the enhancement of the local economy. Different examples of energy cooperatives in Europe were presented and case studies on how to engage the local community. An interesting project on the training of communal energy advisors, which took place in Spain was presented and participants had the chance to work on practical exercises in groups. On financing, the ethical banking and EU programmes were presented, as well as crowdfunding campaigns in Croatia from the team of UNDP Croatia. The session 100% renewable energy systems for non-engineers focused on energy economics and the structure of energy systems around Europe. Representatives of Greenpeace Greece presented on how to revolutionize the economy through small-scale RES, representative from FoE Scotland presented on community engagement practices from the UK and Zambia and other presentations focused on social movements and the crisis in Greece, RES taking over energy supply and the opportunities for Greece. Also, the five project proposals from the first SEYN Academy in Solta and the development of the projects were presented by their coordinators.

The visit to the Orthodox Academy of Crete (OAK) provided a first hand opportunity to learn about the efforts of the OAK and the local community to establish an energy cooperative as well as the debates on the resistance of the local groups against the installation of RES on the island. The participants also visited the Technical University of Crete, where they attended interesting presentations on projects of the students under the supervision of Professor Theocharis Tsoutsos from the Environmental Engineers Department. Moreover, Assistant Professor George Chalkiadakis at the Computer Engineers Department involved the participants in an online simulation game about home energy reduction.

The Crete Academy ended with the presentation of the participants’ five project proposals in plenum:

Give a shit
A project about the unsustainable western toilet system and the use of energy out of toilet waste. The project launched the #WeDoGiveAShit campaign as part of the World Toilet Day on 19 November 2015. Location of project coordinator: Lisbon

Energy transition schools
The project deals with the energy efficiency in schools: energy upgrade efficiency in school buildings and energy and environmental educational seminars for students and teachers. Location of project coordinator: Athens

Solar van
A mobile energy efficient van with installed photovoltaic that travels between different points of innovation and links them, informs the local community on the benefits of energy saving and renewable energy sources. Location of project coordinator: Crete

Collection of oil waste from the oil production factories to convert them into biomass production and electricity generation. Location of project coordinator: Crete

Compost bench
The school community, pupils and their families compost their organic household waste: they will produce healthy garden soil and students will learn about gardening and their responsibility for their school environment. Location of project coordination: Patras

The academies were important for the development of SEYN focal groups in different countries. SEYN participants are now exchanging information regarding the development of their project ideas in Solta, Zagreb, Crete, Athens, Lisbon, Rotterdam and other areas. 

SEYN participants write their opinion on the Crete academy:

“I learned how to manage the energy consumption of a place through clear and simple presentations”

“Inspiring ways of team working”

“Great discussion on revolutionizing the economy through small-scale RES”

“After the experts’ advises it was much easier to develop our ideas”

“SEYN Crete academy rocks!”            


Sustainable Energy Youth Network


                                                      SEYN CRETE ACADEMY PROGRAM

Sunday, 27.9.2015

Individual arrival of the participants

19.30-20.30 Dinner

Monday, 28.9.2015

08.00-09.00 Breakfast

09.00-10.15 Opening and welcome by SEYN and supporters
Marina Petrovic, Jamie Peters, Alexandros Filippidis, Chrysanthos Vlamis

10.15- 12.00 Introduction of participants and lecturers

12.00-12.30 Break

12.15-14.00 Engaging communities with energy cooperatives
Dirk Knapen,
Facilitator RESCoop, Belgium Presentation
Susana Guerreiro, Coopernico Cooperative, Portugal Presentation
Antonia Proka, Phd Candidate, Drift, Netherlands Presentation
Moderation: Alexandros Filippidis, SEYN member
Chrysanthos Vlamis, Heinrich-Böll-Foundation Greece

14.00-15.00 Lunch

15.00 Visit to Orthodox Academy Crete
Engaging the community in energy projects
Konstantinos Zormpas,
Director Othodox Academy of Crete
Antonia Proka, Phd Candidate, Erasmus Drift project, Netherlands
Dirk Knapen, Facilitator RESCoop, Belgium
Comments:  Nikos Chrysogelos, Cooperative Wind of Renewal, Greece

World café - Working in groups with the participants’ fields of interests
Moderation of groups:
Anne Schiffer, Dirk Knapen, Mak Dukan, Antonia Proka, Susana Guerreiro

19.00-20.00 Dinner at the Orthodox Academy Crete

Tuesday, 29.9.2015

08.00-09.00 Breakfast

09.00-14.00 More Work with Less Energy – Training of communal energy advisors  
Introduction to the project and practical exercises on the work of an energy advisor
Hartwig Berger,
Project director, Germany Presentation1Presentation2
Elisabeth Herrera Acosta,  Engineer and project consultant, Spain
Working in groups with the experts:
Anne Schiffer, Dirk Knapen, Antonia Proka, Mak Dukan, Mislav Kirac, Jamie Peters

14.00-15.00 Lunch

15.00-16.30 Financing community energy projects
Ethical Banking and EU Programs 
Goran Jeras,
Ethical Bank, Croatia Presentation
Comments: Nikos Chrysogelos, Wind of Renewal Cooperative, Greece

16.30-17.00 Free time

17:00- 18:30 Capoeira class with Chrysanthos Vlamis,  Natasa Batsi and Susana Guerreiro

19.00-20.00 Dinner

20.00-22.00 Presentation of the development of projects from 1st SEYN Solta Academy
Moderation: Marina Petrovic, Jamie Peters,  SEYN members
Comments from experts: Anne Schiffer, Dirk Knapen, Nikos Chrysogelos, Hartwig Berger, Mak Dukan, Mislav Kirac

Wednesday, 30.9.2015

08.00-09.00 Breakfast

09.00-10.00 Financing community energy projects
Crowdfunding campaigns
Marina Petrovic
, UNDP, Croatia Presentation
Mislav Kirac, UNDP, Croatia Presentation
Mak Dukan, Crowdfunding Consultant, Croatia Presentation
Moderation: Nikos Chrysogelos, Wind of Renewal Cooperative, Greece

10.00-14.00 Development of community energy projects
Building of working groups on participants fields of interests
Working group 1 Dirk Knapen, Alexandros Filippidis
Working group 2 Anne Schiffer, Jamie Peters
Working group 3 Nikos Chrysogelos, Marina Petrovic
Working group 4 Mak Dukan Mislav Kirac
Working group 5 Hartwig Berger, Elisabeth Herrera

14.00 – 15.00 Lunch

15.00- 19.00 Free time

19.00-20.00 Dinner

20.00-22.00 100 % renewable energy systems for non-engineers
Kirsten Hasberg,
Energy Consultant, Germany
Dirk Knapen, Facilitator RESCoop, Belgium
Moderation: George Chalkiadakis, Assist. Prof, Technical University of Crete

Thursday, 01.10.2015

08.00-09.00 Breakfast

09.00 Visit to Technical University of Crete

10.00-11.00 Presentation of students’ RES sustainable projects 

11.00-12.00 RES taking over energy supply - Chances and opportunities for Greece
Theocharis Tsoutsos,
Professor, School of Envir. Engineering, Technical University of Crete
Dirk Knapen, Facilitator at REScoop, Belgium
Comments: Nikos Chrysogelos, Wind of Renewal Cooperative, Greece

12.00 – 12.30 Break

12.30-15.00 Home energy reduction: Simulation Game
Introduction in plenum and group work
George Chalkiadakis, School of Electronic and Computer Engineering, Technical University of Crete
Charis Akasiadis, Institute of Informatics and Telecommunications, N.C.S.R. Demokritos PresentationEnergy game description

Individual arrival to MAICH

15.00-19.00 Free time - Project development

19.00 -20.00 Dinner

20.00-22.00 Project pitching: Participants present their project ideas
Comments from experts:Anne Schiffer, Dirk Knapen, Nikos Chrysogelos, Kirsten Hasberg, Hartwig Berger, Mak Dukan

Friday, 2.10.2015

08.00-09.00 Breakfast

Revolutionizing the economy through small-scale RES
Grigoriou & Dimitris Ibraim, Greenpeace Greece Presentation

Community engagement practices from the UK and Zambia 
Anne Schiffer, FoE, Scotland Presentation1Presentation2

Social movements and the crisis
Alexandros Filippidis
, SEYN member Presentation

Moderation: Kyriaki Metaxa, Heinrich-Böll-Foundation Greece
Chrysanthos Vlamis, Heinrich-Böll-Foundation Greece

10.30-14.00 Project development
Project groups make consulting sessions with the experts:
Dirk Knapen, Hartwig Berger, Kirsten Hasberg, Anne Schiffer, Nikos Chrysogelos, Mak Dukan

14.00- 15.00 Lunch

15.00-19.00 Free time - Project development

19.00-20.00 Dinner

20.00-22.00 Final project pitching, Fitting your project idea in the frame of SEYN
Comments from experts: Anne Schiffer, Dirk Knapen, Nikos Chrysogelos, Kirsten Hasberg, Hartwig Berger, Mak Dukan

Conclusions and closure, lessons learned and future expectations
Moderators: Marina Petrovic, Jamie Peters, Alexandros Filippidis, Chrysanthos Vlamis, SEYN members

Saturday, 3.10.2015

08.00-09.00 Breakfast

09.00-11.00 Organizers’ meeting

Individual departure of the participants