Avanzi. Sustainability in ActionMilano, November 2011Leading Think Tank for Sustainable InnovationAvanzi. Sustainability In Action is a leading and independent think tank for sustainableinnovation.Since its founding in 1997, its mission has been to become an independent and credibleplayer in the field of sustainable development. Applied research and pilot projects carried outby Avanzi have shown an innovative approach in terms of both policy implications and actorsinvolved. By collaborating with the most qualified universities and research centers in Europe,it has assured an independent and rigorous approach in both innovation drivers investigationand policies development. Avanzi has played a pioneering role in promoting anddisseminating sustainable development and has contributed to a radical perspective changein many public and private organisations in Italy.Avanzi has conducted research and provided innovative services and business activities,mainly in the field of Socially Responsible Investment (SRI) and Ethical finance –e.g. settingup a dedicated rating agency, Vigeo Italy, and collaborating with the ONG ForumFinanzaSostenibile – the Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) and Local Agenda 21.Bridging academia, business and the public sector, Avanzi represents a quite unique contextin Italy: the investigation on innovative approaches, policies and instruments is followed bytheir effective implementation and broad dissemination through pilot projects and start-upsincubation with high social and environmental impact potential. By closely working with thepublic, private and no profit sectors, it engages with stakeholders and challenges reputationalrisks and business opportunities.Avanzi operates at four different levels - innovation, analysis, implementation and training - inthree different domains of sustainable development: • Public policies, plans and programmes design, evaluation and implementation. Avanzi assists public bodies and companies in policy design and implementation, providing knowledge and methods for the assessment of their impacts on sustainable development. Through proprietary methodologies development and stakeholders involvement, Avanzi identifies the most significant options, the indicators better describing compliance and administrative costs associated with them and the key measures for the implementation and monitoring of environmental, development, welfare and planning policies. • Stakeholders engagement and environmental disputes resolution and prevention.
Participation and stakeholder involvement in decision making processes is a distinctive element of Avanzi’s approach. Avanzi operates as facilitator, mediator and analyst, providing inputs for the identification of consensus based solutions for local and environmental disputes resolution, urban renovation, Agenda 21 processes, crisis management; • CSR, environmental innovation management and accountability.Avanzi assists enterprises and other organisations in acknowledging their responsibilitiestowards stakeholders and in managing the change. The approach is modular and customisedand aims to integrate social, environmental and ethical concerns into all business activitiesand levels, from strategy to operational management. Particular care is dedicated toidentification of risks and opportunities, anticipation of conflicts, benchmark, disclosure,investor relation.Avanzis network of leading Italian and European universities and research centers includes:Istituto per la RicercaSociale (IRS), Fondazione Eni Enrico Mattei (FEEM), Department ofArchitecture and Planning (DiAP) of Politecnico of Milan, the Centre for Research on Energyand Environmental Economics and Policy (IEFE) of Bocconi University and theScuolaSuperioreSant’Anna of Pisa; the EURICSE, the ForschungsstellefürUmweltpolitik(FFU), the Institute for European Environmental Policy (IEEP), the Öko-Institut FVG, theScience and Technology Policy Research (SPRU) and theZentrumfürEuropäischeWirtschaftsforschung (ZEW).The most interesting EU projects developed by Avanzi within this network as coordinator ormain partner are: • Foster social acceptance of RES by stakeholder engagement (REScoop 20-20-20), Intelligent Energy - Europe program (2012-2014); • Governance for Sustainability (G-FORS), FP6 funded project under Priority 7 - Citizens and Governance in a knowledge-based society (2006-2009); • EVIA: Evaluating Integrated Impact Assessments, European Commission DG Research (2006-2007); • IQ Tools: Indicators and Quantitative Tools for Improving the Process of Sustainability Impact Assessment, European Commission DG Research (2004-2006); • The Thematic Evaluation on the Contribution of the Structural Funds to Sustainable Development, European Commission, DG Regio (2002); • Sustainable Teleworking (2002-03); • Improving the Human Research Potential and the Socio- Economic Knowledge Base Program (IHP), Blueprints for the integration of Science, Technology and Environmental Policy, European Commission, DG Regio (2002-2003); • Local Authorities’ Self-Assessment of Local Agenda (2000-01); • Sustainable House (1998-2000); • Eco-Efficient producer services (1998-2000).For more information, consult: www.avanzi.orgAvanzis team is made up of about 12 researchers (excluding stages and temporarycollaborations) with varied backgrounds ranging from economics, law, urban planning topolitical and environmental sciences. Leaders are well-established and recognized in theAvanzi. Sostenibilità Per Azioni 2
scientific community, as their publications in high scientific journals and presentations atinternational congresses prove. Professional experience includes research and training foruniversities, public sector, business and finance, consulting and NGOs. The list of clientsincludes the European Commission (DG Research, DG IST, DG Industry, DG Env), regionaland local governments, industry associations, private firms, public utilities as well as NGOs.Team research expertise focuses in the following fields: • Energy and climate policy (leader: Davide Zanoni) • Urban planning (leader: Carolina Pacchi) • Environmentaleconomics (leader: Matteo Bartolomeo) • Business ethics and finance (leader: Davide Dal Maso).Avanzi. Sostenibilità Per Azioni 3