Research plays a central role in SUEZ ENVIRONNEMENT’s strategy. To stimulate creativity and encourage the emergence of new ideas, the Group promotes more open and collaborative innovation.
A SYSTEM TO FOSTER RESEARCH AND INNOVATION
The research and innovation (R&I) carried out at SUEZ ENVIRONNEMENT is structured around several governance bodies. These bodies aim to propose, identify, finance and monitor research projects on a long- or short-term basis.
SUEZ ENVIRONNEMENT has restructured the governance of its R&I programs around 3 areas:
- Exploratory research, which can involve academic partnerships, investigates new territories or areas within the Group’s areas of operation. Such research is directed by a board composed of representatives from the entire Group in order to initiate long-term projects.
- Applied research is directly overseen by operational and specialized entities, depending on the business segments involved.
- Technological development is carried out by operational units.
The Group also has an innovation investment fund: Blue Orange. This fund supports the commercial and industrial development of young companies that create innovative technology in the environmental services sector. With a budget of €50 million over 10 years, Blue Orange positions itself as an investor and industrial partner.
At the same time, SUEZ ENVIRONNEMENT has launched Innovation Task Force, a system to govern and steer innovation. It identifies innovative projects that could be accelerated by financing technological tests and industrial pilot projects. Over 20 projects have already been launched.
- €74 million devoted to R&D in 2012
- Over 400 researchers and experts
- Over 70 research programmes