Starace believes that technology and business models driven by innovation are key to reducing CO2 emissions and creating a more sustainable future. "You could say we could continue to do our own business the way we used to do, and probably nothing would have happened to us in the next five years. But if we wanted to go and look beyond that, we should change immediately. Sustainability is needed because without it, innovation cannot fly in an energy company," he says.
The case study shows how the implementation of this model, promoted by the 'open innovation' approach, the Group’s Innovation Hubs, the use of the crowdsourcing platform and the investments in digitalization, have helped Enel become a global reference point for innovation. "Enel has been a pioneer in using open innovation as a key tool to lead the transition to a more sustainable energy sector. I believe many companies from different sectors have a lot to learn from Enel’s Innovability® approach," Monteiro says.
A role model for the entrepreneurs of the future
Students of today are the strength of tomorrow, and the future needs to be innovative. That's why teaching the 'Enel's Innovability®: Global Open Innovation and Sustainability' case study is so inspiring, promising and necessary.
"We like teaching this case in the classroom because it allows the students to take a deep dive into what it would take to implement open innovation in a large organization and the implications of such an approach", says Tina Ambos, Professor of International Management at the Université de Genève. According to her, "the case provides excellent background materials to enable the participants to debate their opinions as they put themselves in the shoes of the managers."
Ivanka Visnjic, Associate Professor at ESADE, reflects on how embracing sustainability is a challenge for large corporations. "Despite good intentions, there are not many corporate leaders and top management teams that manage to convince their stakeholders, shareholders and thousands of employees to work towards sustainability goals," she says.
At Enel, we do our best to live up to this corporate responsibility and this award is further proof of our hard work’s success. Visnjic adds that "Enel is an exception and a shining example in that regard." Enel's long-term vision has a clear objective, as Ciorra sums up: "Sustainability is our goal and innovation is the means to get there".