Preliminary Program

Throughout the day, several start-ups as well as initiatives working in the Net Zero-field will present their work at info booths in the foyer.

Sebastian Gemkow | Saxon State Minister for Science, Culture and Tourism, Germany
Dr Igor Papič | Minister of Higher Education, Science and Innovation of the Republic of Slovenia (requested)
Prof. Sebastian M. Schmidt | Scientific Director at Helmholtz-Zentrum Dresden-Rossendorf (HZDR), Germany

Moderation: Dr Jan-Martin Wiarda | Science Journalist

Exploring Community Impacts, just transitions, and conceptual frontiers for industrial decarbonization

Prof. Benjamin Sovacool | Director of the Institute for Global Sustainability at Boston University, USA

The challenge of achieving Net-Zero emissions in industry, crucial for sectors such as electronics, machinery, and chemicals, goes beyond its diverse and heterogeneous operations. While technical solutions like carbon capture, hydrogen technologies, and energy-efficient processes are crucial, this presentation delves deeper. It highlights the often-overlooked social and ethical aspects of industrial decarbonization. The talk addresses how shifting away from fossil fuels impacts communities and workers reliant on these industries. It explores the role of government policies, public pressure, and the cultural, economic, and political shifts that accompany this transition. Key concepts like ‚Just Transitions‘ and strategies for accelerating low-carbon transitions will be discussed, offering a comprehensive view of the multifaceted journey towards industrial decarbonization.

Benjamin Sovacool, Professor of Earth and Environment at Boston University and Founding Director of the Institute for Global Sustainability, is a renowned expert in energy and environmental policy. Previously holding directorial positions at the Sussex Energy Group and the Center for Energy Technologies, his work encompasses energy policy, climate change mitigation, and adaptation, with a keen focus on renewable energy, energy efficiency, and the socio-political aspects of energy decisions.

Sovacool’s research, which has been recognized by figures like former U.S. President Bill Clinton and Nobel Laureate Elinor Ostrom, contributed as a Lead Author to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change’s Sixth Assessment Report. He serves on the Board on Environmental Change and Society for the U.S. National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. As a highly cited researcher in energy and climate policy controversies, his work has received extensive international media coverage, highlighting his impact on global environmental issues.

In exciting short Talks international researchers will present solutions from different areas of net-zero research. Discover different research approaches that underline the central role of science in achieving net-zero emissions.

  • Prof. Kerstin Eckert | Head Transport processes at interfaces, Helmholtz-Zentrum Dresden-Rossendorf, Germany
  • Prof. Ambrogio Fasoli | Programme Manager (CEO), EUROfusion, Switzerland
  • Prof. Srinivas Rangarajan | Associate Professor for Chemical & Biomolecular Engineering, Lehigh University, USA
  • Prof. Tine Tysmans | Associate Professor for Mechanics of Materials and Constructions, Vrije Universiteit Brussel, Belgium

Moderation: Dr Jan-Martin Wiarda | Science Journalist

Early career researchers from Slovenia, Poland, the Czech Republic, Germany and other countries are invited to present their research in the key topicsMicroelectronics (Green IT), Sustainable Construction, Hydrogen and Fusion.

  • Dr Alexey Alekseenko | UNU-FLORES, Germany
  • José J. Baldoví | Universitat De Valencia, Spain
  • Prof. Birgit Beckmann | Dresden University of Technology, Germany
  • Peter Boelens | Helmholtz-Zentrum Dresden-Rossendorf, Germany
  • Dr Attila Cangi | Center for Advanced Systems Understanding at HZDR, Germany
  • Jose Hugo Garcia Aguilar | Fundacio Institut Catala De Nanociencia I Nanotecnologia, Spain
  • Dr Tino Gottschall | Helmholtz-Zentrum Dresden-Rossendorf, Germany
  • Prof. Dominik Kraus | University of Rostock, Germany
  • Mateusz Łuba | Institute of Electrical Engineering in Warsaw, Polen
  • Dr Tobias Meng | Cluster of Excellence ct.qmat, Dresden University of Technology, Germany
  • Dr Anna Sandak | InnoRenew CoE, Slovenia
  • Dr Giovanni Stabile | University of Urbino Carlo Bo, Italy

Visionary thinkers and start-up founders present their innovative ideas for a Net Zero future

How can politics better facilitate research? Which challenges need to be overcome by scientists amidst significant global challenges? In what ways can scientific discoveries lead to faster development of new applications and products? On a distinguished panel, government representatives from diverse nations, with a spotlight on Slovenia, alongside Michael Kretschmer, Minister-President of Saxony, will engage in dialogue with young researchers.

Moderation: Dr Jan-Martin Wiarda | Science Journalist

The Free State of Saxony will award the internationally announced Archimedes Science Award for the first time in 2025. Archimedes formulated the law of the lever in his work „On the Equilibrium of Plane Figures.“ He recognized that using a fixed lever allows heavy objects to be moved with less effort. In this sense, the name of the prize emphasizes the unique leverage effect that outstanding science can have in addressing the major global challenges of our time. Scientific achievements with such leverage effect are to be honored.

The Archimedes Science Award is endowed with €50,000 and is awarded annually by a high-caliber jury composed of the Presidents and Vice Presidents of the four major research organizations in Germany (Helmholtz Association, Max Planck Society, Fraunhofer Society, Leibniz Association), and the Chair as well as the Vice Chair of the executive board of the DRESDEN-concept Alliance. Each year, the prize is advertised with a focus on the respective theme of the Science Conference „Building Bridges“ in Dresden.

Prof. Ursula M. Staudinger | Rector of Dresden University of Technology, Germany

Prof. Sebastian M. Schmidt | Scientific Director at Helmholtz-Zentrum Dresden-Rossendorf (HZDR), Germany