The school focus on sun light conversion to energy and chemical fuels and on the ethical and sustainable use of natural resources. It will be a forum for discussion on new science and technology integration to ensure a sustainable future for people and planet.

A sustainable development for people and planet bases on clean forms of energy and efficient and affordable recycling of resources including ‘endangered elements’. The energy transition from fossil fuels to renewables is already ongoing, but it is a slow and complex process that needs to be accelerated to avoid irreversible ecological damages from global warming. Among others renewable energy sources, conversion of solar light is central giving access not only to electricity but also to chemical fuels. However, a change of paradigm in science, technology and education is required to speed up the process and to achieve a real sustainable progress. The school aims to boost this change integrating different interdisciplinary approaches to the production of energy and chemicals from sun light and to identify solutions that are ethical, affordable and sustainable for the use of natural resources.


• Energy production and sustainability of energy production
• Artificial Photosynthesis
• Bioinspired systems for energy conversion
• Photonics for zero energy buildings
• Graphene/2D materials for photovoltaics
• Laser induced functionalization and nanofabrication
• Elements on stress: war, sustainability and alternative solutions


L. AMIRAV, School of Chemistry, Technion, Israel
A. BONOLI, Dept of Engineering, Univ. Bologna, Italy
G. CERULLO, Physics Dept, Politecnico di Milano, Italy
G. FARINOLA, Chemistry Dept, Univ. Bari, Italy
A. KRIEF, Chemistry Dept, University of Namur, Belgium
L. KOTSEDI, Univ. South Africa and IThemba Labs, South Africa
P. LAMBIN, Physics Dept, University of Namur, Belgium
G. PACCHIONI, Material Science Dept, Univ. Milano Bicocca, Italy
S. PRATO, APE Research, Trieste, Italy
J.-P. RASKIN School of Engineering, Univ. Louvain la Neuve, Belgium
F. ROSEI, INRS-EMT, Varennes, Québec, Canada
J. YANS, Geology Dept, University of Namur, Belgium


A limited number of grants are available to support the attendance of selected participants, with priority given to participants from developing countries. There is no registration fee.


has received funding from the EU's Horizon 2020 research & innovation programme under the Marie Skłodowska-Curie grant agreement 
No. 722591.
Go to day
  • Monday, 13 May 2019
    • 15:00 - 18:35
      • 15:00 Opening  15'
        Speakers: Giacomo BERGAMINI (University of Bologna, Italy), Joe NIEMELA (ICTP)
      • 15:15 Energy and sustainability  1h0'
        Speaker: Alessandra BONOLI (University of Bologna, Italy)
      • 16:15 The over production of truth  1h0'
        Speaker: Gianfranco PACCHIONI (University of Milano-Bicocca, Italy)
      • 17:15 Coffee break 30'
      • 17:45 Graphene/2D materials for photovoltaics  50'
        Speaker: Giulio CERULLO (Politecnico of Milano, Italy)
  • Tuesday, 14 May 2019
    • 09:00 - 14:30
      • 09:00 Oxide semiconductors for photocatalysis: doping versus heterostructures  50'
        Speaker: Gianfranco PACCHIONI (University of Milano-Bicocca, Italy)
      • 09:50 Photocatalysis at the nanoscale  50'
        Speaker: Lilac AMIRAV (Technion Israel Institute of Technology, Israel)
      • 10:40 Coffee break 30'
      • 11:10 Photonics with photosynthetic microorganisms  50'
        Speaker: Gianluca FARINOLA (University of Bari, Italy)
      • 12:00 TBA 30'
        Speaker: Stefano PRATO (A.P.E. Research, Italy)
      • 12:30 Lunch Break 2h0'
    • 14:30 - 18:20 Afternoon section on Elements on stress: war, sustainability and alternative solutions 
      • 14:30 The chemical elements: analysis, isolation, classification, synthesis  50'
        Speaker: Alain KRIEF (University of Namur, Belgium)
      • 15:20 No digital society without sustainable information technology  50'
        Speaker: Jean-Pierre RASKIN (University of Louvain la Neuve, Belgium)
      • 16:10 Coffee break 30'
      • 16:40 Required ores for our future daily needs: who, how, where?  50'
        Speaker: Johan YANS (University of Namur, Belgium)
      • 17:30 High-tech value of tantalum versus artisanal mining in Africa  50'
        Speaker: Philippe LAMBIN (University of Namur, Belgium)
  • Wednesday, 15 May 2019
    • 09:00 - 14:00
      • 09:00 Laser induced functionalization  50'
        Speaker: Lebogang KOTSEDI (iThemba Labs - Laboratory for Accelerator Based Science, Cape Town, South Africa)
      • 09:50 Photonics for zero energy buildings  50'
        Speaker: Silvia PIETRALUNGA (IFN-CNR, Italy)
      • 10:40 Coffee break 30'
      • 11:10 TBA 50'
        Speaker: Ottavia JEDRKIEWICZ (IFN-CNR, Italy)
      • 12:00 Lunch Break 2h0'
    • 14:00 - 19:00 PHOTOTRAIN Meeting 
      • 14:00 ESR presentations  2h20'
      • 16:20 Coffee break 25'
      • 16:45 General discussion  1h15'
      • 18:00 Survival Skills for Scientists  1h0'
        Speaker: Federico ROSEI (INRS-EMT, Canada)
  • Thursday, 16 May 2019
    • 09:00 - 18:35
      • 09:00 UNESCO International Day of Light 9h35' ( Leonardo Building - Budinich Lecture Hall )
        Further information available at the following link: