Talk Community Interview - Paddy Young, Event Director, European Utility Week

  • What is the vision behind choosing the US as partner country for EUW 2017?

We work closely with our community of smart utility professionals and through the interest they portray in industry developments, we try and facilitate a programme to help them in their efforts to reach a more sustainable energy transition.

Over the past decade, the United States has made substantial and promising progress toward a cleaner energy system. This has obviously sparked a lot of interest from utilities around the globe and was the original driver to explore and to ultimately select the USA as partner country for EUW. 

Renewables have competed against fossil fuel generation and are starting to be seen more as a true and viable source of power – not anymore as an alternative source. The cost of solar and wind technologies are declining and customers are also taking more control over their choice of energy sources. The storage market is also allowing for a more dynamic, customer centric application and state mandates are helping to facilitate this. I see the USA as proactively reacting to the challenges of the transition and this is a great opportunity for those utilities, governmental bodies and stakeholders to share their solutions and projects on multiple levels, from innovative solutions to adaptive business models.

  • What can visitors expect from EUW during the event now that the event has chosen the US as partner country?

There will be a US tint to all elements of the event. We are working closely with US partners such as the U.S. Department of Commerce who offers US companies the opportunity exhibit at the event in an effort to engage with key European stakeholders in different networking opportunities. We are also working with GTM and SEPA to facilitate delegations of senior level US utility representatives to attend the event and visit other local utilities in The Netherlands and Benelux for knowledge exchange and business opportunities.  

Our conference team is in touch with key US experts from governmental institutions and utilities so that they can be invited to speak during the Summit and share their knowledge and expertise. We are also making sure we have the right balance of practical utility led projects and experiences being highlighted and offered during our free to attend HUB sessions. 

  • You have recently returned from a trip to New York where you visited the Sustainable Energy for All Forum. Tell us what your key learnings were from the event and how they will impact EUW and the US partnership.

I would say the key take from the event was a word you used in the question. That word is partnership, the challenges faced are manifold and in some instances critical so partnerships are and will become increasingly more important going forward. We at EUW are passionate to continually develop EUW as a platform for the sector to ensure we stay relevant and play a role in sharing best practice and develop a platform where these partnerships can be formed and developed. 

More about Country Partner USA