3rd BESTGRID conference on "Good Practice Exchange" hosted by National Grid

London, 26 February 2015

A summary of the event is available here

Have you heard about a pylon design competition that took place in the UK? Do you know the programme “Natural Grid” that aims at enhancing ecosystems through innovative use of National Grid’s assets? And have you ever thought about engaging with your stakeholders with the help of an old sofa?

Infrastructure project promoters, NGOs, and authorities all over Europe are facing very similar challenges regarding public acceptability, stakeholder engagement, permitting procedures and the reduction of environmental impacts. Many have developed new approaches and brainstormed innovative ideas. Why not learning from these and enhancing them instead of risking to reinvent the wheel? 

With this purpose in mind, our 3rd BESTGRID workshop was dedicated to exchanging good practices. 



09:30 Registration & tea and coffee

10:00 Welcome by Roseanne Thomas, External Affairs & Regional Engagement Manager National Grid; Antonella Battaglini, CEO the Renewables Grid Initiative

10:20 Understanding and overcoming the NIMBY (Not In My Back Yard) problem -
Keynote by Patrick Devine-Wright, Professor in Human Geography at the University of Exeter | Presentation

10:40 Good practice "speed dating" - share your story in 4 minutes

The purpose of the speed-dating format is to provide you with the opportunity to exchange your good practice experiences and ideas in a quick and comprehensive manner. Each meeting involved two people and lasted for four minutes. 

11:40 Coffee break

12:10 Good practice "pitches"

At the info market, various contributors presented their specific good practice examples at their respective stands. In order to give background on the practices context and content, three minute pitches were held in this agenda slot. With the support of visual material the challenges, underlying idea and most interesting facts about the practice were addressed.

  • UK's Advisory Group on electro and magnetic fields (SAGE) | Presentation
  • Sofa sessions of the Plymouth City Council: new consultation techniques | Presentation
  • National Grid "natural grid programme": how to enhance ecosystems with the help of grid assets | Presentation
  • National Grid "VIP treatment project": identifying, dismantling and burying the ugliest pylons of England and Wales | Presentation
  • EirGrid's new consultation process: new approaches towards tourism, agriculture and community compensation schemes | Presentation
  • National Grid's new approach towards stakeholder engagement for offshore grids | Presentation
  • National Grid's stakeholder academy: an internal training programme for stakeholder engagement processes | Presentation

13:00 Networking lunch

14:00 Good practice "info market" - learn more about the above-mentioned examples in a marketplace setting

Following the pitches and lunch, an info market was arranged. There were seven marketplace stalls at which according experts provided content on the above mentioned topics with various materials. 

15:30 Coffee break

16:00 Panel discussion and announcing the most popular info market stall

Guiding question for the discussion was:

  • Are new compensation instruments introduced in some countries a means to increase the support for grid development projects?

17:00 End of the workshop




Impressions of the day

3rd BESTGRID Workshop | London, 26th of February