Innovation and the people behind it: The key to our sustainable future

Written by Simon Bennett, AVEVA Global Head of Research

The pandemic might have halted life as we knew it, but it did not slow digital transformation. In fact, it accelerated that transformation. In two months, we saw two years’ worth of progress in digital transformation initiatives. Now, every industry is set to be completely transformed within the next decade. The World Economic Forum estimates that digital technologies in industry alone could help reduce global carbon emissions by up to 15% by 2030—equivalent to more than the current carbon footprints of the EU and the US combined.

The United Nations estimates that some 75% of the Sustainable Development Goals can be achieved with the technology that already exists today. Nearly half of that technology, however, is still in the prototype phase, which means we have a major collective responsibility to continue to drive innovation in the decade ahead and bring these new technologies to market while there is still time.

Innovation at AVEVA

At AVEVA, we take our responsibility as pioneers in industrial transformation seriously. It is a responsibility we took upon ourselves more than 30 years ago when AVEVA first began out of a research institute at Cambridge University. And we are far from slowing down. In 2021, we affirmed our £120M investment in R&D and future technologies with increased investments in cloud and artificial intelligence (AI). On the market today, we have 26 software solutions designed to accelerate the decarbonization of industry.

AVEVA is excited to be at the forefront of tomorrow’s most transformational innovations in technologies like cloud and AI. Already, three-quarters of the world’s energy is produced with the help of AVEVA software. We are proud to work with a number of industry leaders on their decarbonization efforts, including a leading innovator in carbon capture, utilization, and storage, Aker Carbon Capture, which is using our cloud-based design tools to help mitigate the carbon dioxide emissions of industrial operations. We are also helping Neste, a leading global supplier of biofuels, become carbon-neutral by 2035. With the help of our integrated modeling and analytics solution, Neste is streamlining collaboration and improving efficiency across 80 sites and reducing its emissions by up to 20%.

Investing in a greener future

Every year, investments in digitization continue to grow. McKinsey estimates that next-generation technologies could attract $1.5Tn to $2Tn in capital investment per year by 2025. And although financial investment is essential, it is critical that we also invest in the people who will drive tomorrow’s biggest transformations.

We host a number of in-house innovation events and hackathons throughout the year to generate and nurture fresh ideas that will help us achieve a more sustainable industry of the future. At AVEVA, we know that the next generation will play a pivotal role in spearheading sustainable innovation, which is why we offer a number of apprenticeships and internships each year. Recently, I was delighted to talk to Nadia Crowe, one of our former sustainability interns and now Environmental Sustainability Analyst at AVEVA, about some of the innovative projects she has been involved in since she embarked on her career with AVEVA. Catch up on our live session here.

Our partnership with Schneider Go Green

This year, in our continued effort to encourage grassroots innovation, we were delighted to extend our partnership with Schneider Electric on Go Green, the renowned student competition. Every year, Go Green participants from around the globe submit game-changing ideas that push the boundaries of innovation and digital transformation in energy management.

In 2022, we received over 160 competition entries in our new Decoding the Future category, which focuses on sourcing bold ideas to help reshape the future of design, engineering, and operations for the next generation of industrial assets and infrastructure. This year, competitors across the world submitted more than 22,000 ideas.

Business leaders at AVEVA and Schneider Electric are now busy mentoring and supporting the regional finalists as they polish their idea pitches in preparation for the major grand final this June. We can’t wait to help discover the next bold idea in sustainable innovation!

Tune into our recent LinkedIn Live session to hear more about innovation at AVEVA here.