Panel 3

Panel 32023-06-05T16:37:03+00:00

Sustainability challenges and opportunities for 6G

Thursday, 8 June 2023, 14:00-15:30, Congress Hall


  • Micaela Giuhat (Microsoft, Next G Alliance Green G vice chair, US)

Motivation and Background

Sustainability is in focus for the 2030 society and is therefore naturally a key challenge for future networks to address. The ICT community needs to consider both a direct impact from networks (labelled Sustainable 6G), working on reducing footprints, and an enabled effect from use of networks (labelled 6G for sustainability), working on supporting use cases that bring about sustainable transformation of society. Important aspects to discuss are trade-offs between different types of sustainability, and possible trade-offs between performance benefits and societal benefits.


  1. What is the biggest sustainability challenge with current networks?
  2. What is the most important step to take in 6G to reduce the environmental footprint from ICT?
  3. Do you see any good possibility for 6G to address the UN SDGs?
  4. Are there any sustainability risks that 6G could give rise to through its usage?
  5. How do we best ensure that 6G is developed in a direction that addresses sustainability challenges?


The panel is composed of (see CVs below):

  • Chair: Micaela Giuhat (Moderator) (Microsoft, US)
  • Pernilla Bergmark (Ericsson, SE)
  • Ali Rezaki (Nokia,)
  • Liesbet Van der Perre (KU Leuven, BE)
  • Thierry Lestable (TII, AE )
  • Azeddine Gati (Orange, FR)

Micaela Giuhat

Micaela Giuhat joined the Microsoft’s 5G Policy team in August 2020. Prior to that, she hold executive roles in several telecom companies, most recently she served as a Vice President of Market Strategy for Metaswitch Networks. Micaela brings along more than 30 years of industry experience, with previous executive positions in leading Cloud Communications, and IP Networking companies in the U.S as well as abroad.  She has extensive telecom background, and experience, contributions and leadership in different standards and industry bodies, such as ITU, Softswitch Consortium, and has been on the Board of Directors of the i3Forum until 2020. In 2021 she was nominated Vice-Chair of the Green G working group and Chair of the Policy Committee of the Next G Alliance, as well as Co-Chair of the FCC CSRIC working group 3.  Her experience spans wireline and wireless communications, with focus on virtualization, cloudification and 5G, in different roles, such as Product Management, Product Marketing, and M&A.  Giuhat holds a master in EE from the Romanian Polytechnic Institute, and a MBA from Ottawa University.

Pernilla Bergmark

Pernilla Bergmark is a principal researcher at Ericsson focused on the sustainability impacts of ICT. Her research interests include methodology development and assessments related to climate impacts, circular economy and planetary boundaries. She is also a research fellow of Exponential Roadmap Initiative and a co-author of the Exponential Roadmap for 1.5oC aligned climate action, a collaboration between Future Earth, Sitra, WWF, KTH Royal Institute of Technology, PIK, Ericsson and others, where she focused on policy and technology. Pernilla Bergmark is also active in standardization as a co-rapporteur of ITU SG5 Q9 which develops environmental assessment standards for ICT, in ETSI EE, and in the Swedish national committee for cities and environmental management. Lately, she has contributed to the development of the ICT sector decarbonization trajectory and Net Zero guidance and the methodology for assessing avoided and added emissions of ICT solutions, as well as to ISO´s Net Zero Guidelines. She is also active in the 6G research projects Hexa-X, Hexa-X-II and the European Green Digital Coalition.

Ali Rezaki

Ali Rezaki is Head of Systems Sustainability at Nokia Standards. His main focus is on holistic, datadriven environmental sustainability research in telecommunications. In addition to the carbon footprint of networks, climate change mitigation and adaptation as well as biodiversity and geodiversity are among his research interests. Ali has more than 30 years of industry, university, and public-sector research experience in telecommunications. Previously, he led the security standardization and research activities of Nokia Standards. In the past, Ali took part in major networking technology transformations, starting from Frame Relay and ATM to MPLS and IP, xDSL & FTTx, through to 5G & 6G and Industry 4.0, participating in numerous cooperative projects and industry initiatives. Ali had also been active in governance, policy, and strategy domains at national, regional, and international levels.

Liesbet Van der Perre

Liesbet Van der Perre is Professor at the DRAMCO group, WaveCore division, of the department of Electrical Engineering at the KU Leuven in Belgium. She received her Ph.D. degree from the KU Leuven in 1997. Dr. Van der Perre was with the nano-electronics research institute imec in Belgium from 1997 till 2015 where she took up responsibilities from system architect to director of the wireless program. Prof. L. Van der Perre’s main research interests are in wireless communication and embedded connected systems. Her current focus is on energy efficient solutions for IoT and 6G systems and considering sustainable development goals in the broad sense. She has (co-)authored over 400 scientific papers and 4 books. She was a co-initiator of the EU project ‘EARTH’ on Energy Aware Radio and Network Technologies, the scientific coordinator of ‘MAMMOET’ (2014-2017) progressing massive MIMO technology for efficient transmission, and currently takes up this role for the European H2020 REINDEER and Horizon Europe 6GTandem projects.

Thierry Lestable

Dr. Thierry Lestable is the Executive Director of the Artificial Intelligence (AI) & Digital Science Research Center (AIDRC), covering multi-disciplinary units such as AI, Telecom (B5G/6G) and (Cyber)Security, within the Technology Innovation Institute (TII) in Abu Dhabi, UAE. Before, Dr. Lestable was Director, heading the e-Mobility & Automotive Business Department from Sagemcom (France), addressing Market and Products challenges raising from Intelligent & Connected Vehicles (Telematics, DMS, ADAS), to micro-mobility (e-Bikes). Dr. Lestable was member of the Steering Committee from FIEV Federation, which represents major Automotive Equipment Suppliers, where he promoted the benefits of A.I for road safety. Prior to Automotive, he was heading the Industrial IoT Business Department, designing and manufacturing connected devices, and platforms for the industry (Smart City, Asset Management, Smart Grid, …), rolling out LPWAN Networks worldwide. Earlier, as Head of IoT Business Development & Strategic Partnerships, he actively participated to the Launch of IoT LoRa™ Alliance, being granted the position of Vice-chair for the Strategy Committee in June 2015, then from October 2015 till 2017 was the Vice-Chairman of the Alliance. Dr. Lestable has +25 years’ experience in the Telecom, Mobility and Energy industry, steering industrial innovation, from spark of ideas to prototypes, products, standards, and systems, rolling-out networks, whilst leading new businesses, within organizations such as Alcatel, Samsung, and Sagemcom. He received both Engg. Degree from Supélec (France) in 1997, and Ph.D, in 2003 from Supélec/Paris Sud-Orsay. Dr. Lestable is author of 35+ international publications, 20+ patents, editor of 1 Wiley Book on Advanced Channel Coding, co-author in 2 Wiley Books on B3G/4G systems, was Telecom Expert for the European Commission, Eureka Cluster CELTIC, and the French National Research Agency (ANR).

Azeddine Gati

Azeddine Gati is a telecom Engineer with a Phd in radio communication and signal processing. He is currently leading a department in Orange’s Innovation division dedicated to ICT environmental assessment, Data for Green solutions, flexible Energy opportunities and Green procurement. Prior to working on CO2, Azeddine led a research program for Green at Orange and participated to the development of a portfolio of 50 technical levers targeting energy efficiency. In particular, he introduced new optimization levers based on data and AI for Green wireless networks. During the last decade, Azeddine, led more than 4 European projects dedicated to 2/3/4/5G networks and inside which have been developed some energy saving features like those for 5G systems. In 2012, Azeddine was appointed vice-chair of the GreenTouch initiative which involved more than 70 companies around the world targeting green networks. His current interests are mainly around GHG emissions for scopes 1,2,3 and 4 with the objectives of contributing to the goal of carbon neutrality and developing the enabling role of the ICT sector in the green transition of other sectors.

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