Keele University hosts first Staffordshire Smart Energy Summit

More than 100 people from a range of businesses and organisations attended Keele University on Tuesday (4 April 2017) to participate in Staffordshire’s first Summit dedicated to Smart Energy.

The event featured guest speakers from some of the world’s leading organisations in the energy sectors – Siemens, WSP Parsons Brinckerhoff and McCamley – as well as a keynote address from Keele University Chancellor and world-renowned writer and environmentalist Jonathon Porritt.

The Summit also showcased the opportunities available to local businesses through the University’s Smart Energy Network Demonstrator (SEND) – a new programme that will create a ‘living laboratory’ across the Keele campus and enable organisations to research, develop, test and evaluate new energy technologies and associated services.  By working alongside local businesses, the programme aims to support new innovations that can ultimately improve energy efficiency, reduce reliance on fossil fuels and cut carbon dioxide emissions.

ERDF and UK Government logos The SEND programme is part-funded through the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) as part of the England 2014 to 2020 European Structural and Investment Funds (ESIF) Growth Programme.  It is also receiving funding from the Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy.

Speaking about the programme, SEND Director Professor Zhong Fan, said: “This is Europe’s first ‘at scale’ smart energy network demonstrator, and offers the very realistic prospect of establishing Stoke-on-Trent and Staffordshire businesses at the heart of the global market for smart energy technologies.

“Whether your business is currently in the energy sector or is looking to develop a product that could benefit that market, we would love to hear from you.”

Further information regarding the SEND project can be found online at or by contacting Keele University’s Business Gateway on 01782 733001 or


About European Regional Development Fund

The Smart Energy Network Demonstrator project (ref: 32R16P00706) is receiving up to £9million of funding from the England European Regional Development Fund as part of the European Structural and Investment Funds Growth Programme 2014-2020. 

The Department for Communities and Local Government (and in London the intermediate body Greater London Authority) is the Managing Authority for European Regional Development Fund.

Established by the European Union, the European Regional Development Fund helps local areas stimulate their economic development by investing in projects which will support innovation, businesses, create jobs and local community regenerations. For more information, please visit