UN Economic Commission For Europe Looks At InnovationPublished on 19 April 2013 @ 3:47 pm
By Tiphaine Nunzia Caulier for Intellectual Property Watch
Last week’s event on the “the role of innovation in creating a dynamic and competitive economy,” held at the 65th session of the United Nations Economic Commission for Europe (UNECE), gave an opportunity to a panel of experts to discuss the role of innovation in the current European economic circumstances as a tool to improve productivity and competitiveness by different means.
Panellists at the 10 April event agreed that successful innovation requires collaboration between the public and private sectors, as well as between academia and industry.
To illustrate these interactions, Giovanni Anelli, chief of the CERN (European Organization for Nuclear Research) knowledge transfer group, highlighted how strong research institutes like CERN can foster innovation and have a high societal impact by transferring their innovations to society. He gave the example of the World Wide Web, invented at CERN and then shared with society. He also pointed out that CERN technology helped to develop medical therapies against cancer.
Yigal Erlich, founder and managing partner of the Yozma group, explained Israel’s success in creating an ecosystem around innovation. For him, the success of Israel is based on the country’s entrepreneurial culture and on the fact that the government plays a key role in encouraging innovation by permitting entrepreneurs to take risks.
Stelmaszczyk said that this programme supports research and innovation to find new transportation means that are environmentally friendly and where scientific excellence and industrial competitiveness are key components.
Some panellists highlighted the importance of greening the economy as a large-scale structural transformation and where innovation has a key role to play.
For instance, Stefan Sundman, from the Finnish company UPM, which specialises in recycling wood materials, analysed the sector as a means to answer current ecological problems. He referred to the wood industry as one that reinvented itself and redeveloped by using recycled materials and stressed that in this regard innovation played and is still playing a crucial role.
The results of the panel discussion will serve as regional input to the 2013 UN Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) Annual Ministerial Review dealing with “Science, technology and innovation, and the potential of culture, for promoting sustainable development and achieving the MDGs [UN Millennium Goals].”
Tiphaine Nunzia Caulier may be reached at email@example.com.