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ScottishPower And Iberdrola Working With Comillas And Strathclyde Universities To Launch International Energy Masters Degree

11/04/2012

ScottishPower and Iberdrola are working closely with the University of Strathclyde and Comillas Pontifical University ICAI in Madrid to develop an International Energy MBA (Masters in Business Administration).

Iberdrola and ScottishPower Chairman Ignacio Galan discussed the new initiative with First Minister Alex Salmond during a visit to Iberdrola’s Group Training Centre outside Madrid today. Mr Salmond saw firsthand the leadership programmes the energy company has in place to develop the next generation of talent.

ScottishPower recently launched a major recruitment drive in the UK to bring in 300 new engineers in order to address a looming skills gap in the energy sector.  The company is also investing £6.5 million in grassroots skills development between 2011 and 2013. This investment will range from developing pre-apprentice schools programmes, to establishing technical partnerships with colleges and universities, all the way through to the sponsorship of specialist post graduate scholarships.

These programmes will play a key role in energy infrastructure programmes during the current decade. Iberdrola is investing the equivalent of €5 billion in the next five years in transmission and distribution networks in the UK, supported by a stable regulatory framework for these investments. In this context, the Company recently announced a 260 mile long high voltage cable link which will run from Hunterston in Ayrshire to a landing point on the Wirral peninsula, the longest of its type in the world.

The Iberdrola Group operates in more than 40 countries and the International Energy MBA is being designed to give employees the opportunity to develop their knowledge and understanding of the challenges and opportunities in global energy markets. The Training Centre at San Agustín de Guadalix, just outside Madrid, last year hosted a significant number of the total of 1.2 million training hours in more than 24,500 courses offered by the organization in 2011.

Academics and experts from ScottishPower and Iberdrola are currently formulating the specific content and design of the MBA, but the focus will be on developing management skills to give staff greater insight into the technical and commercial considerations of energy markets across the world.

Ignacio Galan, Chairman of Iberdrola and ScottishPower, said: “It is important that we offer our employees access to development opportunities that will help them succeed in any of the countries that we operate in. Energy is a global business, and as engineers we must be ready to meet the global challenges that our industry faces.

“We have long standing relationships with both the University of Strathclyde and Comillas University. Both institutions excel in engineering merit and we look forward to developing this new innovative international partnership.”

Professor Susan Hart, Dean of Strathclyde Business School, said: “The University of Strathclyde has a clear focus on building partnerships with business and industry, to create educational experiences for executives that are challenging, rigorous and useful. At the Business School, our partnership executive education programmes are tailored to the needs of specific sectors and the contemporary challenges that businesses face, which distinguishes the way we develop and deliver value.

“The International Energy MBA will further strengthen the University’s long-standing relationship with Iberdrola. This is a truly international partnership that will involve staff from Spain, Mexico, Brazil and USA, providing them with a global perspective of successful strategies for the energy industry.

“Strathclyde Business School is known for innovation in leadership and management education, and our aim is to add value to our partners’ achievements by working with them on the development of their talent, building reflective and agile teams.”

During his visit, Mr Salmond also visited Iberdrola’s Distribution Operations Centre in Madrid, one of the most technologically advanced in the world, offering top-flight supervision and control facilities with maximum security. From this centre the company runs all its electricity distribution installations in the Madrid region.

Media information: Simon McMillan 0141 614 4582 / 07753 622 257

Notes to Editors:

Existing Partnerships with the University of Strathclyde

Technology Innovation Centre (TIC)

A world-leading research and technology centre that will transform the way universities, business and industry collaborate to bring global competitive advantage to Scotland, has been launched at the University of Strathclyde.

The Technology and Innovation Centre at Strathclyde (TIC) will bring together up to 1200 academics, researchers and project managers from the University and its leading industrial partners to work  side-by-side in a state of the art building in the heart of Glasgow.

Fundación IBERDROLA Scholarships Programme

The scholarships programme first launched in January 2010 to contribute to excellence in training and research within the energy sector.  It is designed to offer support to future leaders and professionals that can help progress towards a sustainable energy model.

Scholarships are available for 1 year postgraduate Masters degrees in Energy and Environment related topics at the following universities: University of Edinburgh, University of Strathclyde, Imperial College London and University of Liverpool.

The organisation has invested £380,000 in the past two years supporting 19 students in UK Masters programmes, covering full tuition fees and a generous monthly living allowance.

ScottishPower Chair in Smart Grid Technology

ScottishPower joined forces with the University of Strathclyde to boost the progress of ‘smart’ electricity grids in the UK and to help position Scotland at the forefront in the development of this new technology. ScottishPower is funding a non teaching position to support high quality academic research and development that will lead to a practical application of new technologies and knowledge exchange within the industry.  The university is funding an associated lecturing position based in the department of electronic and electrical engineering.

The Power Network Demonstration Centre (University of Strathclyde)

A world class research centre in Scotland that will accelerate the adoption of new, 'smart' technologies, from advanced power grids to electric cars and household appliances.
The £12.5 million Power Network Demonstration Centre - the first of its kind in Europe - is being created by the University of Strathclyde and ScottishPower, with support from Scottish Enterprise and the Scottish Funding Council.

The Centre will play a key role in increasing the UK electricity grid's efficiency and reliability, as well as testing the next generation of smart electrical technologies. This will support the integration of new renewable energy sources, electric vehicles and smart household appliances with the grid, such that emissions and cost can be minimised.

ScottishPower Advanced Research Centre

ScottishPower and the University of Strathclyde have joined forces to provide an Advanced Research Centre (SPARC) at the University, which aims to put ScottishPower at the forefront of new developments and technologies in its energy networks business.

The partnership, which will receive annual funding from ScottishPower, will involve researchers from the University's Department of Electronic and Electrical Engineering - the largest academic centre of electrical power and energy expertise in Europe.

The aim is to develop new technologies that can be put to practical use on ScottishPower's electricity networks, and seeks to deliver business benefits from environmental efficiency to system performance. The research will focus on three main areas - power network development, asset engineering and asset strategy.

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