For the opening of the second conference of the research programme "Strengthening Efficiency and Competitiveness in the European Knowledge Economies" (SEEK) on March 9 and 10, 2012, in Mannheim, ZEW President Wolfgang Franz was delighted to welcome approximately 200 international participants from the areas of science, politics, and the economy. The conference, which focuses on the key challenges of an eco-friendly economic growth, was opened by Minister of the Environment, Climate Protection and the Energy Sector of the State of Baden-Württemberg Franz Untersteller. Keynote speaker of the first conference day was Klaus Töpfer, Executive Director of the Institute for Advanced Sustainability Studies (IASS) and former Executive Director of the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP).
The key lecture was followed by a top-class panel discussion. Georg Zachmann, energy expert of Brussels-based think tank BRUEGEL, Fritz Vahrenholt, Chairman of RWE Innogy GmbH, Peter Terwiesch, Chairman of ABB AG, and Georg Müller, Chairman of MVV Energie AG, discussed on ways to promote a sustainable growth that protects our resources and climate, and, at the same time, increases the innovative strength and competitiveness of Europe.
The second day of the SEEK conference will be reserved for the scientific discourse. In various workshops, ZEW researchers and their international cooperation partners will present research results from various SEEK projects.