Online Round Table for Stakeholders
On Wednesday, the first online round table of RENEWAC took place through an online event, which was moderated by the esteemed Dr. Mustafa Serdar Ataseven, Honorary Member of TWEA and President of Ataseven Group.
The evening event marked the first major event of the Turkish- Austrian cooperation project which is supported from the Austrian Development Agency, ADA. The goal, introducing RENEWAC’s Vision and its Team behind to a local sector was greatly exceeded.
With more than 200 registered participants and nearly 150 participants, the evening was a huge success. Furthermore it showed the huge local and regional interest in training facilities for the operation and maintenance of renewable energy plants.
Dr. Mustava Ataseven opened the event, with an introduction about the Turkish wind sector and the importance about training activities.
Prof Dr. Levent Kandiller, Vice Rector of Yaşar University, took then the word and spoke about the Renewable Energies focus at Yaşar University and furthermore its meaning for the entire region of Izmir.
Dr. Ataseven then led the microphone to Dipl. Ing. Michael Puttinger who informed all participants about the RENEWAC Vision and shortly introduced who is behind this cooperation.
Following the opening addresses a panel session was started, where every project partner had the chance to briefly introduce his affiliated institution.
Beside the Project Partners, also external speakers shared their interest and support for this venture.
In a first glance Mr. Georg Karabacek, Austrian Trade Commissioner in Istanbul, talked in his presentation about the role of Wind Energy as a cross border economic driver. He highlightened both, Austrian and Turkish Wind Energy achievements, their targets and economic key facts.
Dr. Ataseven mentioned a memory from his binds to Austria and his visits in the past to be refreshed soon through this ongoing cooperation.
After highlighting Austria as an Expert in Renewable Energy Technologies it was time that Turkey presented a current situation and an outlook in their region from their perspective. This was the role H.I. Murat Celik as a representee from IZKA, the Izmir Development Agency which is highly involved in many activities related to renewable energy knowledge and training in the region.
IZKA clearly states Izmir as the hub of Renewable Energy. Therefor they are providing support to institutions who are willing to invest in the Izmir region. As part of their strategical development of the region, they are also involved in training activities and ready to cooperate with the RENEWAC initiative.
In future, Izmir is awaiting an even higher and more important role as an renewable energy hub. In the wind sector, also offshore plants are foreseen and are already in pipeline. A big harbor with a center for production and assembling of wind turbines was created north of Izmir therefore.
Dr. Ataseven then again referred that any training facility new built in the Region also should address a higher level of trainees and that (at least) a high school level should be targeted.
Alper Kalayci then introduced to the audience a very young but promising community/cluster institution, ENSIA. As the Chairman of the „Energy Industrialists & Businessmen Association, ENSIA“ he can be proud about his actually 47 corporate members. Formed in 2016, they are directly employing nearly 10.000 people and aiming to position Turkey as a recognized producer and implementer of renewable energy and energy efficiency technologies and its components.
A very interesting graph presented was the average age of a wind turbine which is currently 6 years. Scenarios show, that in only ten years this average age of a wind turbine will double. Given the fact that the maintenance of such turbines increases with the age it is obvious that turkey must develop capacity to being capable operate these wind parks in a sustainable way.
Alper Kalayci then handed the word back to the internal project partners where Bakk. Birgit Birnstingl started to introduce the company Sekem Energy. In a very brief report she talked about the comprehensive companies experience in Renewable Energie Development and Training projects. Mr. Jürgen Grandits then introduces the role of the vocational training institute BFI Burgenland and its relation and experience in the field of wind energy. E.g. BFI Burgenland developed customized training contents for Enercon and Vestas. Beside Mr. Jürgen Grandits also Mag. Carmen Tariba is onboard RENEWAC as a training specialist to develop trainings in specialised fields. Her short presentation was about the structure of the curricula development and as well about the three pillars of which it later should consist: Fundamental-, practical- and specific technical knowledge.
Time then was ready that a Turkish counterpart adds the needed local ingredients to develop such a training. Dr. Emrah Biyik, Head of Energy Systems Engineering Department, explained the expertise of his scientific institute and its role in the RENEWAC project.
Ms. Dipl. Ing. Theodoridou Vasso then spoke about the Excellence in Education through modularity and continuous improvement of contents. „Modular, – stackable and up to date education is the foundational to achieve our mission of increasing knowledge and access to high-quality education to renewable a green future!“ she stated.
Following to Dipl. Ing. Vasso, Mr. Ünal Terzi represented Bolakar Energy. Especially throughout his long-term experience in the sector and also through his network the RENEWAC project will be a very fruitful and sustainable one.
Beside the right content, based on experienced know how, it furthermore needs an accreditation to guarantee sustainability to a training project. Therefore Dipl. Ing. Cihan Önder contributes with his vast experience in standardization and accreditation to this project and ensures the right process according to the established standard ISO IEC 17024. How to reach this high standard he mentioned briefly in his presentation.
As a first question rising was the targeted group of a RENEWAC training facility in future. It was discussed that RENEWAC will cover different level of education. Basic technical skills will be required. IZKA mentioned that the fast growing industry will have a large demand of accredited trainees. It was mentioned that RENEWAC wants to start in Izmir, but will be open for the whole region to welcome trainees and furthermore has open doors for any other training cooperations.
As also some Yaşar Students were participating in the event, a exciting discussion was also the question what will be offered to students. Dr. Ataseven here turned the discussion and asked what the students need and what currently could not cover by the university. It can be seen as a clear outcome of the event that practical based hands on trainings would be highly appreciated.
The event itself was a first introduction into a holistic integrated training program. Participants and speakers will keep in touch and follow up with sector specific events to adapt the training program as best as possible to the local needs. In a first Train The Trainer program it is foreseen to equip local experts with the needed skills to teach trainees.
The event was held online with simultaneous translation provided in Turkish and English. Nearly 200 stakeholders and sector players were registered from where nearly 150 were following the entire event live. At the end of the event, all participants were able to leave their anonymous feedback and suggestions for a later training programs under following link: -it will be open for one more week. So please do not hesitate to leave your comment and support us preparing the renewable future. 
The RENEWAC team