Schneider Electric : Preservation of Tesla's legacy

Candidature pour le Grand Prix de la CCIFS, dans la catégorie RSE


High school and college students in Serbia apart from tennis player Novak Đoković, as a role model also see scientist Nikola Tesla. In spite of that, 47% of Belgradians have never been to Nikola Tesla museum, even though they wanted to visit it, while 64% of Nikola Tesla museum’s visitors are foreign tourists. Half of the total number of Serbs worldwide (10.5 million) live outside the home country. In the first emigration wave one of the emigrants was Nikola Tesla who experienced affirmation in the U.S.


Schneider Electric (SE) is one of those companies old enough to have had  the opportunity to cooperate with Nikola Tesla and his company, by signing the agreement on patent protection in the field of production , transmission and the use of alternating current in France, 1892.


SE is dedicated to support education and to encourage young people to continue their professional development  in Serbia. By presenting the valuables  in the museum’s archive, and by using new technologies for presenting the cycle of  alternating current, we are encouraging young people to foster and appreciate cultural wealth of their own country.


  • By referring to historical connection and connection with Tesla, seize the moment and support the jubilee celebration. Present the long SE tradition.
  • Protection of Tesla’s heritage alongside SE portfolio promotion – installing of the up to date equipment for climate and humidity control, which will secure the best possible conditions for preservation of 160 000 documents and Tesla’s personal objects. Emphasize the quality of SE products as adequate for preserving the delicate historical heritage.
  • Partner up with our local partners and in cooperation with them make this project (our local partners Elektrovat and Enel PS joined and helped us with this donation by donating they working hours and installation expertize, while SE donated equipment)
  • Partnership with relevant historical institutions – positioning of SE as one of the partners in the jubilee year, who makes considerable contribution in modernization and attractiveness of the museum’s setting, as well as increasing the number of visitors.
  • Present innovative and creative ways of power transmission and encourage people to use alternative power sources.


Via story about historical connection between Schneider and Tesla, create a story about exhibition the museum owns and the ways of adequate conservation, which is donated to Nikola Tesla museum (MNT) by today’s SE. The spotlight is on 1) education – with 3D mapping setup; 2) sustainability through protection of museum’s archive with SE equipment; 3) increasing the visibility of the jubilee through mutual communication activities with the museum.

The way of execution of communication activities:

 - Parts of the correspondence between Tesla and MNT were exhibited in MNT during the French week in Belgrade.

- SE took part in major display held on the occasion of jubilee celebration on Kalemegdan fortress with the goal to attract as many visitors as possible. Both Belgradians of all age and tourists visited the display, making it over a million people in one month.

- There have been created posts on official SE FB page about the inventions and interesting facts of Nikola Tesla’s life.

- The museum organized special event for media and donors on which it presented a new exhibition which also included SE setup. On this occasion the director of the museum handed a special reward for exceptional contribution to the director of SE.

- The interviews and TV appearances were organized for the directors of SE and the museum, native texts for Nedeljnik and Politikin zabavnik were placed, describing historical connection and the importance of preserving cultural heritage and familiarize visitors with energy circulation in the nature.

- Another setup of electrical energetic system has been made and it was exhibited in the Gallery of Science and Technology on Serbian Academy of Sciences and Arts in July 2016, after which it was gifted to the Museum of Sciences and Arts where it stands as a part of regular setting.

- VIP cocktail for professional audience, media and partners was organized in the MNT when the donation was presented. Since then, the showing of the donated setup and the explanation of the systems of use of the renewable energy sources make a regular part of the museum tour.

The effect and the way of evaluation:

The connection between SE and Tesla has been strengthened and preserved on several ways: by raising awareness about historical relations, by supporting the Museum in the modern, and, technologically seen, highly developed times, by dedication of SE to preserving the cultural heritage and by encouraging the young population to inform themselves about the values of their own country.

1) The heating and cooling fittings have been installed in the walls of three rooms of the archive. In this way SE familiarized its users with its portfolio and positioned itself as a socially responsible company.

2) Proactive and constant communication showed great results in increasing the number of visitors (K1-K3: +65%)

3) By receiving the special recognition from the museum, the awareness of Tesla and SE connection increased within professional and business publicity.

4) The long-lasting partnership with MNT has been made and thanks to innovative technology and SE solutions the modernization of the museum has been launched, joined by other companies as well.

5) High visibility of the campaign through positive media coverage and sending of key messages, over 80 media reports.

6) Through student forums organized by SE every November as a part of French week, young people had the opportunity to see the setup in the Museum of Science and Technology and to understand the importance of this project.

Creativity and innovation:

By using innovative SE technologies and 3D mapping complex processes of power transmission and the transformation of the energetic sector have been presented. Museum gain one very attractive piece that is now part of a permanent exhibition. This model was made in cooperation with the museum employees and upon their ideas for future exhibition look. SE as a company used its communication channels and influence to communicate about Tesla, museum and celebration and in that way increase the impact of our messages. SE managed to involve local partners in donation and increase number of persons and companies involved in this CSR activity. Also, in that way SE managed to increase the value for equipment donation since Elektrovat and Enel PS donated installation. We have managed also to make one more museum model and donate it to Museum of Science and Technology.



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