One year after the closing of the Energy Storage Global Conference 2018, Doriana Forleo, ESGC Conference Manager, guides us behind the scenes of the 2020 edition to discover what the European Association for Storage of Energy is preparing for the attendees of the ESGC 2020.
What does ESGC stand for, and why does EASE organise this conference?
ESGC stands for Energy Storage Global Conference and it is the biannual event organised by EASE – the European Association for Storage of Energy. The “ESGC project” was inaugurated in 2014 as an opportunity to discuss the latest trends in energy storage technologies, compare business cases, and assess regulatory issues across segments and countries. The technological developments and regulatory framework for energy storage were extremely different back then, and the main aim of the first edition of the conference was to bring together some of the leading storage companies, researchers, and policymakers to debate these pressing issues.
We have come a long way since 2014. Today the ESGC is a well-known event that attracts more than 300 participants from all over the world for its speakers, its content, and its relevance. In 2020 we expect to welcome around 400 attendees in Brussels, a growth linked to the rising interest for EASE events and for energy storage as a key enabling technology for the energy transition.
While the energy storage technologies, business cases, policy and regulatory frameworks have changed in the past years, our commitment and focus stay the same: quality rather than quantity. The ESGC is a place where attendees can learn about cutting-edge projects and actually connect with the experts presenting them. EASE’s goal for the upcoming months is to design a human sized event, with high quality content and ad-hoc networking opportunities.
The ESGC has reached its fourth edition. What will you keep and what will change compared to the previous editions?
There are two pillars of the ESGC that we will definitely keep: quality and location.
100% of the participants of the ESGC 2018 would recommend our event to their colleagues, 92% would be interested in attending the conference in 2020 and 69% judge the logistics excellent. We want to keep on improving these results. For this reason, the ESGC will stay a sales-pitch free conference. The EASE Secretariat will select all speakers and carefully review all presentations to guarantee the best quality across all of the relevant topics for the storage sector.
The ESGC 2020 will take place in Brussels, at the heart of European policymaking. The exchanges among industry representatives, innovators, researchers, representatives from European Institutions, and national governments are a hallmark of EASE’s events. For this reason, we are committed to granting the presence of all access to everyone, choosing accessible venues and ensuring great value for money.
A change will occur in the format of the event, since the ESGC 2020 will be more interactive than the previous editions.
We will go beyond networking and create the right circumstances for all attendees to establish personal connections already in the conference rooms. We will experiment with formats, introducing collaborative activities and replacing the traditional “questions and answers” format with the more engaging “conversation and inputs” format.
The networking areas will be designed to allow one-to-one business meetings and to give every exhibitor and sponsor the possibility to personally engage with every participant.
Finally, several site visits, the opening dinner, and the gala dinner will allow for discussions in an informal environment. We believe in human interaction, and we are designing the conference in a way that allows all participants to connect, learn, and share.
There are many energy storage conferences planned in 2020. Why should someone choose the Energy Storage Global Conference?
There are many conferences nowadays and most of the them are high quality events with excellent presentations and networking opportunities.
Most of these conferences have a commercial scope; the ESGC on the contrary aims at creating a platform to debate the most pressing challenges for the development of energy storage and generating recommendations for policymakers to foster the deployment of storage in Europe.
The balanced configuration of the audience allows virtually every participant to connect with the representatives of the European Parliament and the European Commission and present them his/her project, needs and challenges. The ESGC is the place where we build the energy system of tomorrow. The real question is: why would someone choose not to be there?