In AREA 21, we develop seven so-called Energy Improvement Districts (EIDs) as test-beds for cooperative energy planning on a district level. Every EID collaboratively develops a strategy and an action plan outlining the individual path towards energy-efficient districts.

At the campus of St. Petersburg Polytechnic University (SPbPU), one of our seven EIDs, the local strategy and action plan emphasise the role of students in energy saving. While technical energy efficiency measures are inevitable, they unfold their highest potential only if the users of the EID (i.e. mainly students living in the campus dormitories) are activated and contribute as well.

One of the measures to incentivise and motivate students is the “EcoGen Cup” championship for students living in the EID. “EcoGen Cup” aims at activating students and triggering their commitment to energy saving in the EID.

The live session of “EcoGen Cup” on 04 March 2020 gathered 37 students in ten teams, covering different SPbPU institutes. The groups analysed the EID’s energy consumption status quo and developed ideas and concrete energy-saving measures. The main focus of the analysis was on this EID’s specific circumstances that users have no direct economic motivation to save energy: all energy costs are covered by SPbPU, both for dormitories and general energy consumption in all other buildings.

The jury of AREA 21 experts and SPbPU managers awarded the best proposals with prizes.

Mr. Dmitry Peskov, Special Representative of the President of the Russian Federation on Digital and Technological Development, head of the division of the Agency for Strategic Initiatives, took part in the discussion of presented ideas.

He noted the importance and relevance of the issues discussed and wished participants to more actively use modern digital tools to promote their ideas on environmental protection and social development.