Competence centres

The Swedish Energy Agency is funding eleven competence centres during the period 2022 to 2026, together with companies, the public sector and academia. Within these centres, a number of higher education institutions and institutes undertake applied research in fields ranging from electricity systems and bioenergy to transport, industrial processes and energy systems. The aim is to build knowledge and competence to help accelerate the energy transition. 

Sweden's energy system is complex, and a high level of competence is required to develop and maintain the system. Furthermore, new knowledge is required to facilitate a swift transition of the energy system away from fossil-fuel dependency. 

The Swedish Energy Agency has, for many years, funded competence centres as an effective way of encouraging collaboration between academia and companies where knowledge and acquisition of competence is based on both societal and the companies' needs. 

Previous evaluations of competence centres have shown that a large proportion of the researchers from the centres progress to a career in the commercial sector, which strengthens commercial competitiveness.

The majority of these researchers first conducted their doctoral studies within a competence centre and were later employed by a company participating in the same setting. In this way the centres build and supply key competencies to the Swedish energy sector.

Eleven new competence centres as part of a joint venture

In 2020, the Swedish Energy Agency launched a call for renewing its existing portfolio of competence centres.

As a result of this funding, eleven competence centres, of which seven were completely new, commenced activities on 1 January 2022. The new competence centres currently involve over 230 industry stakeholders, 150 doctoral students and 65 postdoctoral fellows.

The centres have received support for an initial period of five years, with the possibility of extending this with an additional five-year period. Long-term financial stability helps create the conditions needed to build more in-depth relationships and increase collaboration between the stakeholders.

Joint financing

The competence centres are a joint venture where the Swedish Energy Agency contributes approximately 600 million SEK which represents a third of the funding, and the remaining two-thirds are financed by higher education institutions and institutes along with commercial and public organisations. The total level of funding for the eleven centres is equivalent to approximately 1.8 billion SEK during the first stage. 

Approved competence centres


Biogas Solutions Research Center – science for unlocking the sustainability potential of biogas solutions

Main applicant: Linköping University.

Co-applicant higher education institutions and institutes: The Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences. 

Description: The aim of the Biogas Solutions Research Center (BSRC) is to raise knowledge about socio-technical energy systems that contain biogas-based solutions. Biogas-based solutions often perform well from a sustainability perspective as they combine waste management, production of renewable energy and production of renewable fertiliser. The Swedish Energy Agency judges that BSRC clearly contributes to an increased sustainability in the structural changes that are necessary for a transition within both the transport sector and within industry.

Total budget: SEK 193,250,000

Approved funding: SEK 60,000,000 


Coordinator: Mats Eklund


Swedish Electromobility Centre

Main applicant: Chalmers University of Technology.

Co-applicant higher education institutions and institutes: KTH Royal Institute of Technology, Linköping University, Lund University, Uppsala University, The Swedish National Road and Transport Research Institute and RISE Research Institutes of Sweden AB.

Description: Electromobility is an enabler in the challenges connected to creating sustainable mobility, on land, sea and in the air. Research and collaboration are crucial in solving these challenges and the Swedish Electromobility Centre (SEC) contributes to the solution through high quality, industry-relevant, strategic research within five thematic areas that are defined together by academia and industry.

Total budget: SEK 276,755,000

Approved funding: SEK 92,250,000


Coordinator: Linda Olofsson 


The Swedish Electricity Storage and Balancing Centre

Main applicant: Chalmers University of Technology.

Co-applicant higher education institutions and institutes: Linköping University, Lund University, Karlstad University and Uppsala University.

Description: The Swedish Electricity Storage and Balancing Centre (SESBC) aims to be a key enabler for reaching the vision of a 100% renewable energy system through the establishment of an interdisciplinary and internationally competitive Swedish hub for excellence in research and industrial collaboration, covering the whole chain from materials and components to energy management systems.

Total budget: SEK 162,691,500

Approved funding: SEK 54,230,500

Website: About SESBC, Chalmers

Coordinator: Massimo Bongiorno 


Technologies and innovations for a future sustainable hydrogen-economy

Main applicant: Chalmers University of Technology.

Co-applicant higher education institutions and institutes: RISE Research Institutes of Sweden AB.

Description: The competence centre TechForH2 conducts applied multidisciplinary hydrogen research with a focus on heavy haulage. The centre's main focus is primarily on integrating technical solutions into practical application, an area that creates many new multidisciplinary research needs. Successful implementation of solutions is necessary to be able to quickly reach significant reductions in CO2-emissions and is also critical to ensuring that Swedish industry continues to be successful. The integration of new hydrogen technology also creates challenges within education and training and here, TechForH2 has important contributions to make.

Total budget: SEK 161,625,000

Approved funding: SEK 53,875,000

Website: About TechForH2, Chalmers

Coordinator: Tomas Grönstedt


The Swedish Hydropower Centre

Main applicant: Luleå University of Technology.

Co-applicant higher education institutions and institutes: Uppsala University, KTH Royal Institute of Technology, Chalmers University of Technology, Karlstad University, Umeå University and Lund University.

Description: Hydropower plays an important role for electrification and the transition of the energy system by providing flexible, reliable, safe and sustainable electricity. In order to fulfil this potential, new knowledge is needed regarding the balance between electricity production from hydropower, the environmental impacts of hydropower, security and societal issues.

This competence centre addresses issues related to: 

  1. Ensuring that hydropower facilities are safe and have a long lifespan, that is to say an operational life of 60-100 years.
  2. The implementation of measures for ecological restoration in aquatic ecosystems and
  3. An optimisation of water use to accommodate both the need for renewable energy as well as the need to protect biodiversity, even when considering climate change.

Total budget: SEK 279,900,000 

Approved funding: SEK 93,300,000 

Website: The Swedish Hydropower Centre ( 

Coordinator: Staffan Lundström 


ANItA Academic-industry nuclear technology initiative to achieve a future sustainable energy supply

Main applicant: Uppsala University.

Co-applicant higher education institutions and institutes: Chalmers University of Technology and KTH Royal Institute of Technology.

Description: The competence centre ANItA assembles a significant part of the Swedish industrial and academic competence within nuclear technology with the aim of supporting the development of knowledge-based strategies for the introduction of small modular reactors in Sweden. The work within the centre is multidisciplinary and includes not only nuclear technology but also licence and legislative aspects as well as issues related to how the introduction of new nuclear energy technology affects industry and societal techno-economic strategies.

Total budget: SEK 81,490,000

Approved funding: SEK 25,128,000

Website: Uppsala University (

Coordinator: Ane Håkansson 


Competence centre for sustainable turbine fuels for aviation and power generation (CESTAP)

Main applicant: Lund University.

Co-applicant higher education institutions and institutes: RISE Research Institutes of Sweden AB and Luleå University of Technology.

Description: The competence centre for sustainable turbine fuels for aviation and power generation (CESTAP) will develop new fuel production methods and fossil-free fuels as well as working with potential modifications of turbine engines or turbine engine components for aviation, maritime transport and back-up power generation. The Swedish Energy Agency judges that the centre will stimulate production and use of fossil-free fuels within aviation and energy production.

Total budget: SEK 118,100,000

Approved funding: SEK 39,175,000


Coordinator: Christer Fureby 


Broadleaf competence centre - Sustainable forestry, materials and energy

Main applicant: The Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences.

Co-applicant higher education institutions and institutes: Luleå University of Technology, Umeå University, Skogforsk and Uppsala University.

Description: Trees For Me (TFM) is a competence centre for the production and refining of the fast-growing broadleaf trees birch, aspen, poplar and hybrid aspen for energy and other products. Fifty partners representing academia, forest research institutes, companies and the public sector collaborate within TFM. The Swedish Energy Agency judges that the centre can contribute to a diversification of economic structures within the forestry sector along with an increase in bioenergy products. 

Total budget: SEK 112,905,000

Approved funding: SEK 37,635,000 

Coordinator: Urban Nilsson 


RESILIENT Energy Systems Competence Centre

Main applicant: Mälardalen University.

Co-applicant higher education institutions and institutes: Uppsala University, University of Gävle, Umeå University and RISE Research Institutes of Sweden AB. 

Description: Five research organisations together with ca 30 companies and public bodies are behind the competence centre RESILIENT Energy Systems. The aim is to increase knowledge and competency regarding the transition of the Swedish energy system towards high reliability and resource efficiency as well as low environmental impact. At the centre of this is the need for knowledge about how sector coupling between transport infrastructure, industry and the built environment, including business models and organisational structures, can help create resilient energy systems.

Total budget: SEK 189,000,000 

Approved funding: SEK 63,000,000

Coordinator: Eva Birgitta Thorin


The Competence Centre for Catalysis

Main applicant: Chalmers University of Technology.

Description: The Competence Centre for Catalysis has the vision of using the participating partner's expertise within catalytic techniques to achieve the energy and climate policy goals for a sustainable energy system and a fossil-free welfare state. The competence centre's fields of research are catalysis for synthesis and production of renewable energy carriers, catalysis for reduction of greenhouse gases and emissions, catalysis for fuel cells and electrocatalysis, and catalysis for energy-efficient chemical processes. The centre will generate knowledge, develop new catalysts and educate a new generation of students to be highly qualified researchers and engineers with comprehensive knowledge within the field which will be critical for the transition to a sustainable society.

Total budget: SEK 117,000,000

Approved funding: SEK 39,000,000

Website:KCK, Chalmers

Coordinator: Magnus Skoglundh 


SOLVE: Solar Electricity Research Centre

Main applicant: Uppsala University.

Co-applicant higher education institutions and institutes: The Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, RISE Research Institutes of Sweden AB, Dalarna University, Mälardalen University and Karlstad University.

Description: The Solar Electricity Research Centre (SOLVE) was created as a strategic partnership between Sweden's excellent research base within solar electricity and a broad and motivated group of stakeholders within the private and public sectors. The common vision for the centre is a large-scale expansion for solar electricity in Sweden, driven by smart and well thought through integration in towns, agricultural land and within the energy system to help contribute to the sustainability goals. The centre also intends to have a clear role with regards to the expansion of Swedish companies involved with solar electricity, both in Sweden and internationally.

Total budget: SEK 129,627,740

Approved funding: SEK 36,500,000

Website: SOLVE, Uppsala University

Coordinator: Marika Edoff 


Brief summary of the Swedish Energy Agency's Competence Centres:

  • Research that is both of a high scientific standard and is driven by a motivation to meet the commercial sector's and society's requirements of knowledge and competence.
  • Active collaboration where activities are planned, initiated, and undertaken jointly with the commercial sector, the public sector and the respective higher education institutions and institutes. As well as a dynamic environment where the stakeholders' different characteristics contribute to creating new perspectives within the collaborations.
  • International attractiveness and competitiveness that result in well merited collaborative partners, both national and international, from leading groups in the subject field.
  • Development of applied knowledge and a supply of competence that are both required for a sustainable society, and to meet future needs regarding competitiveness and supply of competence. The examination of doctoral students and academic merits for junior researchers are fundamental parts for all of the competence centres.
  • Active leadership with the ability to get individuals and teams to work together, deliver and develop by utilising everyone's unique competencies and knowledge.
  • An organisation that strives to offer equal opportunities to everyone, where both women and men participate in an equal way and influence the organisation's activities and tasks.