Veolia Institute

Veolia Institute has been enriching the company's initiatives and foresight on the major challenges facing our planet since 2001. A platform for reflection and debate, the Institute tackles issues related to society and the environment – such as climate change and urbanization – while addressing an array of environment-related economic, sociological and cultural issues.

At the confluence of society’s expectations and environmental demands, Veolia Institute endeavours…


The Foresight Committee is the institute's central body. Its members include six internationally renowned experts who guide the Institute's approach by offering independent insight based on their wide-ranging expertise. Veolia Institute also draws on an extensive network of researchers and experts around the globe.

Its activities involve a three-pronged approach comprising international conferences, publications: FACTS Reports, S.A.P.I.EN.S and foresight studies.



2017 was particularly busy for the Veolia Institute since it organized its international conference on 2 and 3 November in partnership with Oxford Martin School in Great Britain. This major event focused on the availability of mineral resources in the low carbon transition and the economic, energy, environmental, geopolitical and governance issues related to this topic. Find information about this conference as well as the video of Lord Nicholas Stern's speech at the conference. 

> Conference on “Mitigating methane emissions: from science to innovative solutions”

In 2015, the Veolia Institute launched its "methane" initiative for COP 21, with first an international conference upstream of COP21 which brought together high-level speakers and nearly 150 participants to the Economic and Social Council, and then two Side-events during the COP 21 at Le Bourget.

In 2016, the Institute continued to sensitize decision-makers on the importance of an action on methane, in addition to action on CO2, at COP22 in November in Marrakech. Thanks to its status as an Observer NGO granted by the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change in 2015, the Veolia Institute organized, in the official zone, a side event entitled "Actions on near-term climate mitigation to achieve quality and achievements in the Paris climate goals and the SDGs". The Veolia Institute joined forces with the Climate and Clean Air Coalition, the main voice for bringing methane and other short-term climate pollutants into discussions with policy-makers.

To know more about the work of the Institute on Methane click here

> Conference  on “Ecosystems, Economy and Society” 

The 8th Future Environmental Trends international Conference of the Veolia Institute was held at the Academy of Sciences in Washington DC on May 29-30, 2014, on Ecosystems, Economy and Society: how large-scale restoration can stimulate sustainable development. The event was organized jointly with Agence Française de Développement, the International Union for Conservation of Nature and the US Water Science and Technology Board. The event brought together over 400 people and 52 speakers from 15 countries. 

> To know more about Conference  on “Ecosystems, Economy and Society”



Born out of a desire to pool and disseminate the experiences and expertise of various actors (NGOs, entrepreneurs, public authorities, experts, researchers, companies, etc.), the Veolia Institute has, since 2007, published the journal FACTS Reports in order to benefit from a number of different perspectives on a given topic.

Smart Cities at the crossroads
Artificial intelligence and robotics in cities

 Following the publication of these journals, along with its partners the Veolia Institute organized conference-debates to highlight the content of these publications. Some previous issues:


In addition between 2007 and 2014, the Institute published the journal SA.P.I.EN.S dedicated to the interdisciplinary scientific themes relating to the environment. Some S.A.P.I.E.N.S publications:

  • A S.A.P.I.EN.S issue on the theme of depollution addressing the question of temporality on depollution or the research challenges for preventing and controlling air pollution in China.
  • In 2014, a S.A.P.I.EN.S issue on large scale restoration was published for the Institute’s conference in Washington.



Veolia Institute  works with its academic partners to develop a program of foresight research on key environmental trends.

> Recent research

The European research project RAMSES, “Reconciling, Adaptation, Mitigation and Sustainable Development for Cities” was selected under the 7th EU Framework Programme for Research (FP7) in November 2012 to establish methods for assessing the resilience of urban infrastructure to climate risks. Until the end of 2014 the Veolia Institute contributed to the project in conjunction with 12 academic and industrial partners including the Potsdam Institute for Climate Research (PIK) in Germany, the London School of Economics and Political Science in the UK, the World Health Organization (WHO), the European secretariat of ICLEI (Local Governments for Sustainability), and a number of other bodies in Germany, the UK, Belgium, France, Italy and Spain.

> Other examples

• Measuring urban environmental performance with the United Nations Environment Programme in 2011-2012.

• Comparing the carbon inventories of European cities with the College of Europe (Belgium) and the Wuppertal Institute (Germany) in 2009-2010.

• Indoor air pollution in India with the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (USA).

In order to ensure that knowledge is shared to the full and act as a platform for debate, Veolia Institute makes its entire collection of research reports, conference materials and publications freely available to all.

Activity Report 2016/2017 - Veolia Institute (6.03 MB)

Veolia Institute 

Anticipating economic, environmental and social trends, backed by a network of experts, to provide a platform for reflection and debate with academic and civil society.

Veolia Institute website