STRIDE activities following the second regional training session in June 2022 emphasise stakeholder involvement in the project’s long-term roll-out
One of the main results of the regional STRIDE training events in Hungary, which was made clear already during the project’s preparation stage, is that smart grid development is a parallel/horizontal cooperation of knowledge exchange of technological, legal and financial information. This is also made clear by the fact that the same obstacle has been present during the accompanying efforts for stakeholder involvement.
In Hungary, world-class, internationally-respected professional technology associations and government organisations are currently working in isolation, organising exchange of technological expertise and events separately while keeping track of international development regardless of the need of consumer groups necessary for such growth. The STRIDE project, with its international consortium, could have disseminated good practices and lessons to be learned from the international partners of Bay Zoltán. However, regional Smart Grid expert groups have seemingly lacked the capacity to take into consideration Bay Zoltán’s proposals. Only two main stakeholder groups have requested further cooperation based on the STRIDE efforts: communities in need of electric energy services as well as SMEs providing technologically advanced services in need of customer system or predictable market with quality assured competition. These two groups of smart grid stakeholders in Hungary currently have no experience or tools for connecting to the international best practices and opportunities offered in the political arena, nor within the realm of legal and technological development. Only universities and academic institutions are currently engaged in very high-level involvement in international cooperation, but such horizontal communication is limited.
Some key findings of Bay Zoltán made evident through its involvement in the Interreg Danube STRIDE project include:
- Municipalities need to regularly update their knowledge regarding energy solutions as it pertains to legal, technological and economic aspects. For this, it is highly advisable to employ personnel specialised in smart grid development. In relation to project goals, the motivation of registering participants and identifying other relevant and interested stakeholder groups remained a challenge. Bay Zoltán had attempted to close this gap by inviting some stakeholder experts as presenters at the regional STIDE trainings, in addition to some representatives of SMEs providing advanced IT services.
- The stakeholders providing lectures during the STRIDE trainings could also participate in the continuation of the STRIDE development process, even – or rather, especially – if they already have extensive professional networks in the field of smart grid development.
- SMEs providing advanced power monitoring and controlling services were invited to present during the regional STRIDE trainings. Participation of such SMEs yielded useful information on the need of such services for the increased capacity of Big Data. This information can be used horizontal activities at Bay Zoltán in further domestic services and international activities.
Concluding the second STRIDE training workshop with an open-floor discussion, Bay Zoltán registered to the MEKH (HEA HUNGARIAN ENERGY AND UTILITY AUTHORITY) innovation concept (i.e., innovation sandbox) that was announced to establish a new energy innovation support system. The operation of a Hungarian user information internet platform on the topic of Smart Energy Communities (i.e., Smart Grids, Smart Metering Solutions) was proposed, which aims at proving information for service providing as well as offering SMEs and their potential customers as municipalities / municipal utilities. The Bay Zoltán Applied Research Public Benefit Nonprofit Ltd. would operate the platform and organise the professional information trainings.
The concept of the platform is also supported by the Hungarian Community Energy Service Provider – KESZ and the inaugural Hungarian Energy Communities and Flexibility Service Providers Advocacy Organisation. For registered members, there would be an option to upload a profile, share knowledge and information. The operation of the platform would be quality assured by a professional supervisory board.
- The next step was to prepare concept for BZN to promote results and international sustainability of the STRIDE project. The sustainability line yielded an idea to develop and prepare an international project to create and cocreate a Knowledge Sharing Public Sourcing Living Lab Platform to provide the best ways for municipalities for electric energy sourcing, resourcing, ancillary services etc.. The idea was communicated to STRIDE partners and uploaded for project matchmaking portals such as:
Finally, Bay Zoltán will ensure the long-term impact of the Interreg Danube STRIDE project by participating in high-level national events following the STRIDE Final Conference:
- Presenting STRIDE results at the Annual Hungarian Innovation Conference on 24th November by Dr. Angela Szarka head of Energetics and Electronics Systems Department of Bay Zoltán
- Bay Zoltán will participate disseminating the STRIDE brochure and matchmaking on the Hungarian Solar Conference on 6th December 2022 organised by the Hungarian Solar Panel and Solar Collector Association:
Bay Zoltán also commits to the translation and address of the STRIDE Guidebook into Hungarian for use by national stakeholders.
 The aim of that high level conference is to create an opportunity to think together and diversely about innovation and to share professional knowledge on the topic. It offers bridges and pathways for opportunities to turn into action, thus contributing to the competitiveness of domestic enterprises and knowledge centers, and to the further strengthening of the renewed innovation ecosystem in Hungary.
 The Assotiation is established in 1989, and its goal is to support activities to reduce the dependence on imported energy, to develop the domestic renewable industry and to create jobs. With nearly 300 member companies represent the fields of domestic solar collector, solar panel, inverter, supporting structure manufacturers and distributors, renewable electricity generation and sales, the design and implementation of solar and solar thermal systems and education.