Oversight of SCCER Partnerships with Public and Private Enterprises

The Swiss Energy Strategy 2050 provides for a transformation of Switzerland’s national energy system. The aim of the various Swiss Competence Centers for Energy Research (SCCERs) is to promote the kind of research that will enable a successful transformation. As part of an effort to ensure effective project implementation, EBP examined the extent to which the SCCERs had established promising partnerships with public and private enterprises.

Achieving the Goals Outlined in the Energy Strategy 2050

In the interests of combatting global warming, introducing alternatives to nuclear power and reducing dependence on fossil fuels, Switzerland would like to reorganize its approach to securing and using energy. The current state of science and technology, however, does yet provide a basis for enabling the country to establish an acceptable alternative energy system and to thereby achieve the goals outlined in Switzerland’s Energy Strategy 2050. The Swiss federal government has therefore taken the initiative of establishing competence centers for energy research (SCCERs) whose basic mission is to develop technological solutions and to prepare Switzerland at a societal level for the necessary changes. As university research associations, the SCCERs are expected to explore and develop technological solutions and to present action plans. These solutions and plans are to be market ready and societally acceptable so as to enable their prompt implementation.


Working in an oversight capacity, independent third parties are to continuously monitor the development and effectiveness of the SCCERs and to issue recommendations to the relevant government-appointed steering committee. In the context of fulfilling its oversight assignment, EBP examined the following:

  • The reasons for and the extent to which the existing eight SCCERs have developed relationships with private and public sector partners
  • The manner in which the relationships were initiated
  • The measures taken so far to secure a rapid and successful transfer of knowledge and technology in the context of project implementation

Examination of Networking Activities

Working together with the Institute of Economic Research at the University of Neuchâtel (IRENE), EBP surveyed 1.200 SCCER researchers about their formal and informal cooperation with implementation partners. The data gathered in the survey were then used as a basis for deriving recommendations for the SCCERs and for the organization of funding for the period 2017 to 2019.


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