Researching the energy of the future for a sustainable planet

Researching the energy of the future for a sustainable planet

Betting on postdoctoral research and science is fundamental to move towards the energy of the future. Increased funding for the various studies carried out in recent years has boosted the competitiveness of renewable energy and green technologies.

Much remains to be done, and it is more necessary than ever to strengthen public-private collaboration to reinforce postdoctoral research and innovation. All this with the aim of living on a more sustainable planet where the reduction of polluting emissions is a priority.

New green jobs with great potential

Green technologies open a wide field of action for the creation of new jobs among young people. These can be introduced into a labor sector of great future. For this, academic preparation is a central theme, since it allows the consolidation of a specialized and competitive profile.

The new socio-economic dynamics require continuing vocational training. Thus, the effective search for employment has as its starting point the acquisition of knowledge and experiences demanded by a productive system, such as green energy.

The lack of financial resources poses a repeated obstacle to career advancement. There are factors such as funding, lack of qualified advice and apathy towards scientific research as an alternative to employment that impede professional growth.

Against this background, international fellowships provide support to expand the academic and work horizon. Here the role of Iberdrola with a leading International Fellowship Program stands out. The energy multinational recently launched the Energy for Future (E4F) postdoctoral research fellowship programme with 15 European and American universities. Through this initiative, it reinforces its commitment to research as a tool to promote knowledge and contribute to the consolidation of a more sustainable development model.

The Iberdrola Spain Foundation, in collaboration with the Research Executive Agency (REA) of the European Commission, has launched its first call on July 1, 2021 ( The project will have a joint funding of more than 4 million euros for the next five years and will promote research projects focused on the main technologies associated with the energy transition and the green transformation of the economy. Among these are: photovoltaic and wind energy, evolution of the electric vehicle, energy storage solutions and consolidation of smart grids.

With a duration of 5 years, divided into two calls of 24 months each, it will have the participation of 28 researchers (14 per call). To facilitate geographical mobility and the transfer of knowledge between academia and the industrial sector, the program includes reception periods of 18 to 21 months in universities and research centers. Likewise, there are professional stays of 3 to 6 months at the Iberdrola headquarters in the USA, Mexico, United Kingdom and Spain.

Research for green innovation specialists

The research will be carried out at 15 European and American universities. On the U.S. side will be the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) and the Rochester Institute of Technology. In Mexico, the National Autonomous University will participate, while in the United Kingdom, the University of Strathclyde and the Imperial College of London will participate. The Université de Bordeaux in France and the Fraunhofer Institute for Solar Energy Systems in Germany will also be present.

Finally, eight centers will participate in Spain: Universidad Politécnica de Madrid, Universidad Carlos III, Universidad de Cantabria, Universidad Pontificia de Comillas, Universidad del País Vasco, Universidad de Salamanca, IMDEA Energía and Polymat – Basque center for Macromolecular Design and Engineering.

Excellence in training for a sustainable world

This initiative replaces the previous fellowship program for young researchers which has been promoted by the Iberdrola Foundation in Spain since 2011, an initiative to which it has allocated more than 3 million euros to support the development of 180 researchers.

Likewise, the Iberdrola Foundation collaborates with scholarship programs of various institutions such as the Fulbright Commission, in which each year the Iberdrola-Fulbright scholarships are convened and the Carolina Foundation, which has a program for Mexican and Brazilian students. In addition, the restoration workshops of the Museo Nacional del Prado and the Museo de Bellas Artes de Bilbao, which allow future specialists to complete their training in the conservation and restoration programs of these institutions, stand out. Nobody doubts the need to promote research around the world, for which private funding is very necessary.

Bibliographic references

Fundación Iberdrola España. (30 de junio de 2021). Iberdrola impulsa el programa de becas postdoctorales de investigación Energy for Future (E4F) con 15 universidades europeas y americanas. Fundación Iberdrola España.
Green Innovation. (s.f.). Power-to-X: la consolidación del hidrógeno verde en Europa. Green Innovation.
 Iberdrola. (s.f.). Buscamos estudiantes para trabajar con nosotros hacia un modelo energético sostenible. Iberdrola.
Iberdrola. (s.f.). Enciende tu futuro. Iberdrola.
Instituto Nacional de Estadística (INE). (2021). Tasas de paro según grupos de edad y niveles de educación. Brecha de género. Instituto Nacional de Estadística (INE). 
ManpowerGroup. (2021). Tech Cities. ManpowerGroup.
 World Economic Forum. (2020). Jobs of Tomorrow Mapping Opportunity in the New Economy. World Economic Forum.

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