Social inclusiveness projects and the culture of sustainability







Edison is an integral and active member of the communities in which it operates, putting dialogue and a sharing of experiences, knowledge, values and human development first.

The Company’s goal is to act as a responsible citizen attentive to the needs of the community, through actions and projects that encourage sustainable lifestyles and business solutions and to promote social inclusiveness.


Third edition of Edison Pulse

Edison Pulse continued again in 2016, its third year: over 1,000 students, start-ups, non-profit organisations and research centres have participated over the course of the years, financing a total of eight start-ups with €700,000.

The 2016 edition focused on the promotion of business initiatives that, especially through digitalisation, innovatively meet requirements for efficiency, interconnection, sharing and a low carbon country to encourage more sustainable industrial and civil development.

There were over 400 participants from all over Italy. Tooteko, Bike Bike and Sharewood were the winning start-ups. Tooteko (in the Internet of Things category) is a special ring for the blind or seeing impaired to see works of art through touch and sounds; Bike Bike (in the Low Carbon City category) is an electric engine to easily and quickly put on any bike to improve the quality of city transport while reducing environmental impact; Sharewood (in the Sharing Economy category) is a platform for putting sports equipment owners in contact with tourists interested in bikes, skis and surfboards, for example, so they can rent them at lower prices than traditional rentals, but above all it is a way of helping people share their sports experiences and passion by creating a dedicated international community.

Special mention: Intoino for its educational kit that introduces children to technology and program coding; Bringme JoJob, the company carpooling service to share the daily commute with colleagues and employees of nearby companies; Movieday, a service that cuts out the intermediary in the cinema distribution process to help you organise independent film showings in Italian cinemas.

The fourth annual Edison Pulse contest was held in December, which in 2017 will award €200,000, a month-long support and incubation program at a business accelerator and a communication campaign. Participants may present their projects in any of the four different categories. The first three are: Energy, for innovative solutions in the scope of optimised electricity and renewable energy production, storage and consumer, energy efficiency or smart cities; Smart Home, for intelligent home management projects; and Consumer, for innovative sales solutions, customer care and the involvement of B2B and B2C consumers or for advanced e-commerce solutions.

Following the earthquakes that unfortunately struck central Italy beginning in the summer of 2016, Edison decided to contribute to the recovery of the areas by setting up a special fourth award category, Seismic Reconstruction, specifically for projects to develop tourism, culture, the trades and the know-how of the beautiful areas in central Italy and to innovate the prevention service for disasters caused by earthquakes.

Edison’s commitment to the areas affected by the earthquakes

In August and October 2016, various seismic events struck the heart of Italy and, in particular, the municipalities of Accumoli, Amatrice and Arquata del Tronto and the area bordering three regions: Umbria, Lazio and Marche.

Edison has therefore decided to take action, first to structure attentive, ongoing dialogue with the Lazio Region and Civil Defence to support the areas in Central Italy most affected by the earthquakes and ascertain what actions are the most useful in the short and medium term.

The Company has therefore organised a program that, for this emergency, consisted of the donation of three containers for use as housing to the municipalities of Amatrice and Accumoli and the installation of lighting for Christmas trees in the municipality of Amatrice, Torrita and Sommati district. In addition, it provided food for hot meals at the food shelter and held an employee fundraiser for the educational and recreational centre in Amatrice.

Edison’s contribution has helped manage the initial state of emergency and it will continue to provide assistance throughout all of 2017 with medium and long-term projects to help rebuild in close cooperation with active local institutions and the non-profits already operating in the area, by beginning company volunteering projects and, as noted earlier, by sponsoring business initiatives based in the areas affected and concerning emergency prevention and management.

Commitment to inclusiveness

Inclusiveness means creating a sense of belonging, welcoming and overcoming differences.

For Edison, a commitment to encouraging social inclusiveness means doing something tangible to promote the active and complete participation of people.

In 2016, the transformation team created the “Inclusion and plurality” project to develop tangible solutions to fostering inclusiveness in the Company. The specific activities will be defined after having gathered feedback from external and internal stakeholders through interviews, focus groups and a survey that will be given to all employees.

In 2016, Edison made an EDF Energy its own, Pretty Curious: a campaign to spread awareness in order to encourage girls to study the sciences and to break down gender stereotypes. A film for the campaign was planned for the cinema and the web.

As part of this project, Edison - partnering with “Women’s turn” - has brought its contribution to the Festival “27esimaOra-Corriere della Sera” with the “Energy is female” conference, which was held on 9 September 2016 at the Milan Triennale. Some of Italy’s leading female scientists, young researchers working at renowned centres and an Edison employee spoke.

Inclusiveness through sports

Sports can be a vehicle for important values like respect, team spirit, loyalty and the generosity of sacrifice.

For several years, Edison has supported the Milan ASRugby Association for various activities, including projects like “The sense of a try” at the juvenile detention facilities Beccaria in Milan and “Rugby Bol” at the Bollate prison.

The sense of a try has enabled young people at the juvenile detention facilities to play a team sport that is also a combat sport based on managing aggression and a system of technical and ethical rules, helping them in their rehabilitation process. Through Rugby Bol, the juveniles have founded a genuine “Rugby Barbari Bollate” team with routine practices and games at the facilities. In 2016, a document was prepared on the project and on 11 June 2016 the Barbari team played its second game outside the prison against ASRugby.

Edison has also participated in the reopening of the Edison Rugby Village in Naples. This is a multi-functional space spanning 15,000 square metres to help bring sports and social activities back to the city. Edison Rugby Village in Naples is the new home of the Naples Old Rugby Association, which unites former players, fans and the amateur rugby team, Amatori Rugby Napoli, with around 450 members.

Fondazione Candido Cannavò per lo Sport continued its activities in support of prisons in Lombardy in 2016. Its initiatives focus on the Opera and San Vittore prisons. Over the years, at the Opera prison, the renovation of the inmates’ gym – Edison Candido Cannavò Gymnasium – has been completed and exercise machines and equipment have been supplied. In addition, other prison structures have been updated. Moreover, specialised courses have commenced with certified instructors. Ten inmates received CONI (Italian National Olympic Committee) training and became instructors themselves. In 2016, Edison shared the know-how gained by some of its employees when they established the company sports association, Play, to set up a multi-sport association at Opera, the first of its kind at the prison.

Edison continues to support the ANPIL association, which improves the living conditions of children in underdeveloped countries. It has collaborated with the association since 2010 in projects like Together for Haiti, which two years ago was renewed with a solidarity sports challenge. Through the Play sports association, again in 2016, a group of Edison employees ran in the Milan Marathon in April to raise funds for an energy autonomy project at the Hibiscus mission, where many of the Haitian children that ANPIL hosts and cares for live. The project will provide a continuous supply of energy with inverters, solar panels and batteries, powering the computer lab, among other things.

Promoting a culture of sustainability

For Edison the promotion of the culture of sustainability takes the form of support for initiatives to raise awareness and educate people about the issues of climate change, energy efficiency, sustainable development.

This commitment entails spreading good practices with respect to environmental and social sustainability in collaboration with parties in various cultural fields, from schools to film, music and the theatre, also considering these fields’ significant resonance and high capacity for engagement.

A collective film project about energy, mankind and nature through the eyes of each of us was the idea behind Edison for Nature, an initiative that Edison has sponsored and completed with the collaboration of two prestigious directors, Gabriele Mainetti (winner of seven David di Donatello awards with his film “Lo chiamavano Jeeg Robot”) and Andrea Segre (director of films and documentaries for the cinema and television). The contest was announced in June during Edison Innovation Week, and 300 projects were submitted – including videos, scripts and images – in only two months. The ten best ideas were made into short films by their creators with the support of a team of professionals. The two directors will gather the shorts together for a medium-length film.

But Edison has not lost its focus on film production as well. Edison Green Movie continues to promote the best solutions for energy savings, environmental sustainability and social and economic issues as well in the preparation and filming of a movie. Indeed, by applying the guidelines promulgated in Edison Green Movie, processes are made more efficient and energy is saved, synergies are created at local level, with new experience gained and, obviously, a more knowledgeable use of energy and natural resources.

Considering the synergies that can be implemented at local level, in 2016, Edison continued the virtuous path it set out on in the previous year with Italian Film Commissions to spread good practices throughout Italy with the aim of improving the sustainability of film production: in November it signed an agreement with the Turin Piedmont Film Commission.

As a result of this agreement production houses making films and television shows with the support of the Turin Piedmont Film Commission may receive Green Set assistance resulting from the expertise gained with Edison Green Movie. This joint project also provides for the virtuous involvement of interested public and private parties.

While spreading the expertise it gained with Green Movie throughout Italy, the Company has decided to extend its focus to the sustainability of live concerts as well.

By gathering feedback from concert organisers and analysing activities and processes, Edison has written a series of specific guidelines – Edison Green Music – which it successfully tested during the Music Festival. Each year, when the Music Festival is held, in collaboration with the French Embassy and the Institut français, the Company organizes an extraordinary free concert.

The 2016 shone the spotlight on the singer Carmen Consoli and French duo Le Brigitte. The Green Music guidelines led to a reduction in the concert’s carbon emissions by approximately 75%.

The path to cultural sustainability that Edison has taken underscores how discussion, sharing skills and expertise and the active participation of all parties are crucial to achieving tangible, feasible results.

In this spirit, Edison kicked off a project with the research centre ASK, Art, Science and Knowledge within Bocconi University to create a work panel to share good practices and formulate proposals to submit to the relevant administrations.

Edison for the city of Milan

Since 2014, Edison has partnered with MUBA, the children’s museum of Milan. A story of success and cultural excellence, MUBA is a museum that draws on, in the city of Milan, examples and formats of other major international museums. It is an exhibition space that focuses significantly on innovative didactics in which children enjoy quality cognitive and emotional experiences. Edison supports the museum’s activities, workshops, shows and the lessons that it holds year-round. Edison also has a presence inside the museum with a permanent fun/educational installation on energy and energy efficiency.

For the sixth consecutive year, in collaboration with the Municipality of Milan, Edison has supported the City Piano initiative. It is a two-day, two-night event to the tune of a piano in the spaces that best tell the city’s history. From the city centre to its outskirts, homes, courtyards, stations, streetcars, boats, museums, parks and markets held over 400 free concerts, workshops and lessons focused solely on music and the piano.

Edison has confirmed its brand’s usual events again this year, everyone on board the “Streetcar Piano” (travelling concerts throughout the city centre, accompanied by the story of the origins of public transport in Milan) and “Bicycle Plan”, as well as Palazzo Edison, where visitors can go on a real musical journey through soundtracks, with a special tribute to Ennio Morricone.

On the other hand, Edison’s commitment to supporting the city’s cultural institutions stretches farther back. There is an indissoluble bond between Edison and the Teatro alla Scala, which was first illuminated for the first time using electricity in the late 1800s. Edison is still the main partner of La Scala’s Opening Night in 2016, and has offset carbon emissions during the opening performance. Furthermore, the Company has sponsored, for the sixth year in a row, the City Opening with the “Madame Butterfly in the city” initiative to bring the excitement of Opening Night at La Scala to the public at large. Over 50 free events designed by Edison were held together with the Municipality of Milan and Teatro alla Scala, which brought the magic of the opera to the neighbourhoods of Milan, with concerts, performances, conferences and workshops devoted to Puccini and the themes and emotions of Madame Butterfly. On 7 December 2016, the opera was broadcast live at 27 locations, all for free, giving the city the chance to participate in this important event, which each year spreads culture throughout the city. Palazzo Edison, located at Foro Buonaparte 31 in Milan, hosted two events again this year: on Thursday, 1 December 2016, the performance “From La Bohème to Madame Butterfly” was held with the solo musicians of La Scala’s Theatre Academy, who played the main arias of 19th-century Italian melodrama, devoting extensive space to Giacomo Puccini; while on Wednesday, 14 December 2016, the “East and West meet in the kitchen” even was held with Chef Okabe, officially closing the 2016 City Opening.

Relationship with France

The aim of Fondazione Nuovi Mecenati, sponsored by the French Embassy in Italy, is to promote and strengthen Franco-Italian cultural relationships as part of contemporary art creation and to support the circulation of French works of art and artists in Italy.

Edison is an active member of this foundation and, with the collaboration of Italian artists and operators in the visual arts, theatre, music and dance, the circus, cinema and audio-visual arts, carries out many projects, including: Suona Francese, Festival de la Fiction Française, Rendez-Vous Cinéma, France Danse and PianO-, a Franco-Italian platform for artistic exchanges.