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Innovation Academy 2


Do you want to see a greener, healthier Northern Ireland and make sure your livelihood thrives in the sustainability-focused future?  

Consider using our biggest strength - community - by creating or joining a zero-carbon cooperative in your local area. We all want to do our part to prevent climate change and leave the land in a good condition for the next generation whilst also supporting ourselves now. We can achieve this together with our neighbours.  

A zero-carbon cooperative is a partnership of local people, industry, business, and farmers. The aim of a zero-carbon cooperative is to create a zero-carbon community. Zero-carbon means that all carbon emitted by the community is reabsorbed and all waste is reused so there is no need for external resources (e.g. fertilisers). What form this takes depends on the needs and wants of your local area and the unique industries, farms, and people within it. The real value of zero-carbon cooperatives is the intelligent cross community linking of individuals and organisations. This can include linking producers of renewable fuel or energy with those who can use it to run machinery and producers of waste with those who are able to repurpose it.

Of course, all of this is only possible when we have a solid grouding of knowledge and the abilty to implement that knowledge through innovation. Queen's University Belfast has begun to pull together a package of training in core fundamentals of Net-Zero and innovation training to implement new technologies, create new business or collaboate in a cooperative.

Sign up to Innovate. The Green Innovation Academy


The world needs big ideas to tackle the challenges we are all currently facing. We need innovators to drive the change that is needed.

We have partnered with Venture Folk to create a 3 day program that will seek to lay out the key principles in innovation, how to collaborate and how to build a culture of innovation. Creative and critical thinking are some of the top skills sought by employers, so whether you want to build your own venture, build your skills for work or bring innovation into your business - this programme will help.

Venture Folk is a co-operative of creatives, thinkers and doers focussed on the Sustainable Development Goals, each member of the team runs their own venture and also works with public, private and voluntary sector to drive innovation.

The content is designed around the Entrecomp model, participants will actively develop entrepreneurial competencies and be able to track their individual growth in these areas throughout the programme.

The core areas are:

  • The ability to develop ideas and spot opportunities
  • The ability to mobilise resources
  • The ability to put ideas into action

Participants will gain a toolkit of techniques that they can apply outside of the programme to their own area of work. By the end of this programme participants will:

  • Develop the core competencies that constitute an entrepreneurial mindset.
  • Gain a high level of confidence in using innovation processes and methodologies.
  • Gain practical tips and strategies on how to build and manage teams.
  • Develop a deep understanding of their assigned challenge and their individual impact.
  • Examine tools and resources that can be used to convert ideas into new ventures.
  • Learn practical leadership skills and strategies for developing innovative solutions.

What you will be doing.

28th November 2022

Introducing the principles of entrepreneurial and design thinking Innovation challenge Discovery – asking the right questions in the right way

5th December 2022

Creating the conditions for innovation to happen. Imagination and divergent thinking

8th December 2022

Bringing ideas to life with very rapid prototyping Creating the conditions for collaboration to happen

Please note that dates may change

The programme is for NI residents and for companies or community organisations registered and operating in Northern Ireland.

Take part.
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Belfast skyline

Carbon Literacy Training

We've teamed up with Keep Northern Ireland Beautiful to provide access to their Carbon Literacy training. Accredited through the Carbon Literacy Project and CPD, these programmes provide full training in areas such as Climate change science; Global and local impacts of climate change; Climate justice and equity; Climate policy – global and local; Carbon footprints and Solutions as an individual or a community.

Access Training Site.
Lecturer in The Graduate School
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Further Study Options

Discover further opportunities to study academically and achieve qualifications. Queen’s University is offering free places, funded by the Department for the Economy’s Skill UP, the flexible skills fund on the below courses including Zero Carbon Engineering and Hydrogen Energy Systems. Future-proof your career with a free qualification in Green Technologies.

Find out more and apply.
Sustainability at Queen's
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