We have currently c. 130 member organisations from 38 countries. But who are they and what do they think of EFI? InnoRenew CoE joined EFI in 2017 – find out more about their work and why they joined EFI! Andreja Kutnar, their Director, introduces their work and why they joined EFI.
The research institute InnoRenew CoE is dedicated to research and innovation in the field of renewable materials and healthy built environments. Two key research areas are wood modification – to improve the functionality, durability, and life cycle impact of wood – and restorative environmental and ergonomic design (REED), which supports creating positive health impacts for building users and the environment. The interdisciplinary team of experts combines knowledge from several disciplines, including architecture, construction, mechanical engineering, psychology, ergonomics, ICT, wood science and knowledge from multidisciplinary researchers in the healthy living environments area. This interdisciplinary approach to research and innovation allows InnoRenew CoE to develop novel sustainable construction solutions.
An important part of its activities are related to the construction of institute’s new building, which was designed as a research object. Once completed it will be the largest wooden building in Slovenia, and first one designed and constructed in line with sustainable construction principles of REED. The new building will enable researchers to transfer scientific discoveries into architecture to test them and set completely new goals for architectural planning of the future.
How did you find out about EFI and why did you join?
At InnoRenew CoE we are actively following happenings and developments in the wood and forestry area in Slovenia, around Europe, and beyond. Further, our researchers are always open for new opportunities and they have eyes wide open for what surrounds them. In this regards we came across with EFI as an important player in forestry research and policy support, already in 2017 when InnoRenew CoE was established.
Have you attended any EFI events?
InnoRenew CoE researchers were successful in applying for EFI grants and were thus able to perform longer research visits at foreign institutes in Sweden and Norway, which were great opportunities for them to develop their research, expand their knowledge, and engage with researchers and other stakeholders from abroad.
What one member benefit is most valuable to you?
There are several benefits members get. In my opinion it is very important that we all, as important actors in this area, stay in touch, talk to each other, share knowledge and experiences, and help out when needed. Networking and collaboration are crucial for achieving the much needed breakthroughs in wood and forestry areas. At InnoRenew CoE we are promoting this kind of behaviour and we are encouraging our employees to engage with other researchers and to build on their networks already in the early times of their career.
Staying informed, research collaborations, policy support, sharing content, and funds opportunities for scientific visits are also very valuable assets EFI provides.
What is your favourite tree?
My favourite tree is the European walnut.
Photo credit: InnoRenew CoE