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Institute Lecture on 'Technological Innovations for Sustainable Development’

The Indian Institute of Technology Bombay organized an Institute Lecture on Monday, January 22, 2018 with the title ‘Technological Innovations for Sustainable Development’ by Prof Arnulf Grubler, Professor at Yale, Researcher at IIASA. 

Below is a brief abstract:

The conceptualization of technological innovations is revisited by enlarging the traditional hardware focus by software and “orgware” aspects, and by complementing traditional supply-push or demand-pull linear innovation models by a systemic innovation process approach.

Using energy and climate change as an illustration pronounced asymmetries in current innovation efforts for Sustainable Development (supply-side bias with marginalization of end-use and efficiency) are diagnosed. A contrasting scenario integrating recent trends in social and technological change (ICT convergence; pervasive digitalization; rapid learning in granular, scalable options; new business models in the sharing and circular economy) is outlined and its substantial multiple benefits on a wide range of Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) quantified.

About the speaker:

Arnulf Grubler (Grübler) is Acting Program Director of the Transitions to New Technologies Program at the International institute for Applied Systems Analysis (IIASA) in Laxenburg, Austria.

From 2002 to 2017 he also held a part-time appointment as Professor in the Field of Energy and Technology at the Schools of Management and of Forestry and Environmental Studies at Yale University, New Haven, USA. His teaching and research focuses on the long-term history and future of technology and the environment with emphasis on energy, transport, and communication systems.

Prof. Grubler received his master's degree in engineering from the Technical University of Vienna, where he was also awarded his PhD. He completed his Habilitation (venia legendi in systems science of environment and technology) at the Mining University Leoben, Austria. He is also foreign member elect of the Russian Academy of Natural Sciences.

Prof. Grubler has been serving on the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC, co-recipient of the 2007 Nobel Peace Prize) continuously since 1996, being appointed as Lead and Contributing Author and as Review Editor for the Second, Third, Fourth, and Fifth Assessment Reports and serving in all three IPCC Working Groups (Climate Science, Impacts and Adaptation, Mitigation). He also was Convening Lead and Coordinating Author for three knowledge modules (urban, innovation, and energy systems) of the Global Energy Assessment completed in 2012. He currently serves on the editorial boards of Carbon Management and Journal of Industrial Ecology.

He has published widely as author, coauthor, or editor of twelve books, three special journal issues, over 100 peer reviewed articles and book chapters, and over 30 additional Professional papers in the domains of (modeling of) technological change and diffusion, long wave theory,historical transitions in energy and transport systems, long-term future scenarios, energy technology innovation systems and policy, climate change, and resource economics.

His latest books include: Energizing Sustainable Cities: Assessing Urban Energy, (edited together with David Fisk), Earthscan, 2013; and Energy Technology Innovation: Learning from Historical Successes and Failures (edited together with Charlie Wilson), Cambridge University Press, 2014.