• Fayaz Ahmed

My Experience participating in EIT-Climate KIC Journey Summer School Program 2020

Updated: Nov 24, 2020

The Journey is Europe’s largest climate innovation summer school for graduates and young professionals supported by the Europen Institute of Innovation and Technology (EIT). It is a 4-week full-time residential program focused on climate action, innovation, systems transformation, and community building.

Last week marked the end of the EIT - European Institute of Innovation and Technology Climate-KIC #Journey2020 https://journey.climate-kic.org/

Honestly speaking, I have participated in many international programs (i.e. GLOBAL UGRAD in the United States, EIT InnoEnergy Masters School, Becoming global citizens for a sustainable society by Ban Ki-Moon Center for Global Citizens, and Minnesota State Undergraduate Scholars, etc) but have never met so many talented and inspiring people committed for creating social impact in one program.

Although the last couple of months have been very intensive but I found this experience very inspiring and helpful for my personal and professional growth because it brought a lot of clarity and a sense of direction to me in terms of what I want to do and where I want to be because I met lots of interesting people who really want to solve the problems which don't exist in their backyard to impact lives. In workshops and networking sessions, I did not only extended my knowledge on #systemsthinking #systeminnovation #designthinking and #designsprints and learned about innovative initiatives, I also got to know incredible people. A special thanks to the #NorthernLights group, to our coaches, and to our hosts (The University of Helsinki and Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU) Trondheim), who made of this journey unique! In my group, I along with my amazing team members developed a system innovation plan, proposing a number of organisational innovations for improving the existing microfinance system for rural electrification purposes in Sub-Saharan Africa Region. I have always been very passionate about #EnergyAccess but have always focused on the technical side of it but this project and journey gave me an opportunity to explore different social, cultural, financial and political aspects of #EnergyAccess in developing countries and I am very grateful for this great learning experience.

I am looking forward to continue to work on this idea as well as to implement my local action plan, which focuses on the design and implementation of a user-friendly tool to give the households a choice to adopt sustainable electricity use behaviors by helping households quantify their electricity use in terms of CO2 saved and emitted in Portugal.

I am very grateful for Climate-KIC Journey 2020 for bringing new connections, new skills, new capabilities, and new meaning to me, and finally thanks a lot for reinforcing my commitment to developing innovative ideas for creating systemic change for climate action.

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