Once upon a time
- The protagonist:
Our ex-boss, myself and our team.
- The situation:
We are looking for a hosting VET institution to share space, so that we could equip and operate the Bulgarian Building Knowledge Hub (BKH) that can host the centre and use it for free for their educational purposes. We have an operational concept, financial and human resources and unique equipment to make available to an interested VET institution This is an excellent opportunity because the materials base in educational institution is outdated and malfunctioning. In turn, we want to conduct our own training courses in the BKH a shared-use mode.
Then one day
In the beginning, there is no interest from the management of the University despite the freely available space. After that, we start to look for other hosts and enter in long negotiations with 3 high schools in Sofia, which we have been working with through BUS courses and enjoyed them. However, after reaching principle agreements with all of them, all three schools begin to stall and continuously delay signing the contract, in all three schools.
Because of this, we change strategy and start talking to young professors in the university, trying to look for additional motivation for them. Then, some professors find internal powers, giving us a lifeline. We agree to support them and our ex-chairman, with the support of our team, develops 3 disciplines for the Master’s programme for less than 3 months. I start and win a new H2020 proposal for the University. Based on that – and with official letters from the Bulgarian Construction Chamber and the Sustainable Development Agency, we approach the Rector and press him to open the center. He finally agrees and we find a way to provide, construct and install all necessary equipment in another 3 months and we are ready for opening.
At the end, there are more than 2000 people trained in and around the BKH. Many solid partnerships are found, and awareness on nZEB is largely increased within the university. The supply of training and educational services is improved through the new training programmes we have piloted successfully and training aids we have produced. However, despite the systematic approach we undertook, it still turns out that the human factor is extremely important – and without a few dedicated professors who wanted to start something new, we could have never succeeded.
Executive Director, EnE – Center for Energy Efficiency EnEffect (Bulgaria)
Dragomir Tzanev is Executive Director of Center for Energy Efficiency EnEffect – Bulgaria. Coordinator of the successfully completed BUILD UP Skills – Bulgaria, BUILD UP Skills EnerPro, Train-to-NZEB and Fit-to-NZEB projects (IEE and Horizon 2020 program of the European Commission); team leader of EnEffect for more than 20 international projects.