Research, Development and Innovation

The European grid must be adapted to the arising energy transition power system, characterised by high and increasing variable RES shares, flexibility, and decentralised co-existing with centralised in one system. Innovative solutions on the physical side and the increasing use of digital technologies for the optimisation of the grid are to be applied. The power system will see new players emerge, such as aggregators, and also see the customers moving centre stage.
The section below describes ENTSO-E activities in the field of Research, Development and Innovation (RDI) that occurred in 2019.

Research, Development and Innovation Roadmap

ENTSO-E strongly supports the aim of the Mission Innovation initiative to double the involved governments’ clean technology and research funding by 2021 and has reached out to policy makers, together with EDSO for smart grids, with Six Recommendations of Innovation to deliver the Energy Union.

ENTSO-E promotes and coordinates TSOs’ innovation activities to transform the European energy system into an integrated one, with an emphasis on flexibility (including demand-side response, storage, etc.) and end-to-end digitisation to integrate different technologies and market services.

ENTSO-E advocates for the dissemination and sharing of best practices of RDI through its business coalition platform, named “Business Network for Innovation”. In 2019, innovative business players, start-ups and thought leaders from academia and industry were invited to exchange their views in seven webinars on different topics related to European energy transition (e.g. storage, dynamic line rating, artificial intelligence and satellite technology, flexibility, etc.).

In addition, ENTSO-E organised on 13–14 May 2019, jointly with E.DSO, the InnoGrid2020+ conference centred around “Connecting Physics and Digits: Power Platforms on the Rise”. The conference brought together more than 400 participants from the industry, associations, EU institutions, regulators, academic world and Member States, who discussed how to ensure that digitalisation delivers all its potential value to European citizens and how to ensure it leads to the best possible TSO–DSO interaction. Innovative TSO and DSO projects were showcased under four technical areas:

  1. new technologies and grid planning,
  2. active customer, active system management,
  3. sector coupling and storage and
  4. advanced grids resilience.

In 2019, ENTSO-E began to develop its new RDI Roadmap for the period of 2020–2030, outlining the methodology that contributes to achieving the European climate energy objectives and in line with the European Commission’s Roadmap 2050. The development was led by the RDI Committee of ENTSO-E which initiated a major reprioritisation process to provide an updated basis for the Roadmap 2020–2030, to be aligned with European Green Deal, the new energy policy framework of the European Commission.

As a major step of the Roadmap preparation, RDI Committee began to work on a new RDI strategy of ENTSO-E. In light of the changing environment in which the TSOs operate, RDI Committee took a different approach, which is based on use cases and European flagship projects. The new RDI strategy identified three priority areas:

One System of Integrated Systems;
Power Grid for Energy System;
Cyber-Physical System.

This document will serve as the main pillar of the work of RDI Committee and the RDI Roadmap 2020 – 2030.

ENTSO-E also worked on sharing innovation within the TSO community, via e.g. the mapping of TSOs’ digitalisation-related innovative projects, resulting in “The Cyber Physical System for the Energy Transition” Report.

In addition, ENTSO-E strengthened its role in the European Technology Innovation Platform on Smart Networks Energy Transition (ETIP SNET), through active participation in its working groups and the Governing Board, of which ENTSO-E holds the chairmanship. ENTSO-E is also engaged in the integrated ETIP SNET 2050 vision of the energy system and will contribute to its 2020–2030 Roadmap and the further development of RDI building blocks.

The ETIP SNET Platform falls under the umbrella of the European Commission’s Strategic Energy Technology (SET), as well as the Horizon2020 calls, in which ENTSO-E participates. In 2019, ENTSO-E continued to facilitate proposals for the Horizon2020 call and to foster TSO participation. ENTSO-E is involved in the following projects:

INTENSYS4EU, jointly developed with the ETIP SNET, aims at supporting the further integration of innovative solutions and at extending the existing RDI Roadmaps, through permanent and direct interactions with the impacted stakeholders and EU member states.
TDX-Assist, which aims to design and develop novel ICT tools and techniques that facilitate scalable and secure information systems and data exchange between TSOs and DSOs. Participating TSOs include Eles (Slovenia) and REN (Portugal).
INTERRFACE, which groups TSOs, DSOs, aggregators and IT providers together to conceive a digital solution to support new flexibility markets and develop an interoperable architecture for data exchange between TSOs, DSOs and prosumers. In addition to ENTSO-E, its members Fingrid (Finland), Elering (Estonia), ELES (Slovenia), AST (Latvia), Transelectrica (Romania), and REN (Portugal) are participating in the project.

One additional project was formed within the Horizon2020 framework, in which the “OneNet” consortium – including ENTSO-E and 14 TSOs – could develop further the TSO–DSO-prosumer cooperation and thus flexibility markets should the proposal be awarded funding by the European Commission.


ENTSO-E Annual Report 2019

This Annual Report covers the period from January to December 2019. It focuses on the legal mandates given to ENTSO-E. Activities covered in this report have been performed thanks to the 42 members of ENTSO-E who provide its financial resources and whose staff provides expertise to the Association.


  1. System Operation
  2. Market
  3. System Development
  4. Transparency Regulation
  5. Research, Development and Innovation
  6. Cybersecurity, Interoperability and Data
  7. TSO–DSO partnership and demand side flexibility
Download the full report (PDF, 4.2 Mb)