Universidad Andrés Bello Hosts the 2015 Innovation Council

National and international experts participated in Universidad Andrés Bello’s (UNAB) Innovation Council, which met recently at the university. The council was created last year as an initiative of the university’s Office of Innovation and Technical Development to help UNAB create a strategic plan that can better concentrate innovation efforts to create a larger impact for the university.

The council is composed of Dr. Liz Towns-Andrews, director of research and enterprise at the University of Huddersfield and CEO of the 3M Buckley Innovation Center; Dr. Rainer Fischer, senior executive director of the Fraunhofer Institute for Molecular Biology and Applied Ecology IME; Jorge Yutronic, university management and higher education consultant; Blanca Velasco, director of Plataforma360 Consultores Ltda.; and Iván Vera, president of INNSPIRAL and director of Fraunhofer Chile Research. Each member of the council shared their extensive experience in their field of expertise.

In addition to these external experts, Dr. José Rodríguez, UNAB’s rector; Gonzalo Guzmán, pro-rector; Dr. Ariel Orellana, vice-rector of research and doctoral programs; Dr. Juan Antonio Rock, academic vice-rector; and Víctor Sierra, director of innovation and technological transfer.

Student entrepreneurship 

This year the council focused on visiting the university’s campuses, seeing first-hand how the university integrates innovation and entrepreneurship into programs and student activities. Dr. Towns-Andrews visited UNAB’s Campus Creativo, the Innovation Academy and participated in a U2M Pitch Sparring Session, during which UNAB students that are in the university’s marketing program could receive feedback on their entrepreneurial activities.

The council also looked at technological developments from UNAB’s faculty. Dr. Fischer visited the Applied Nanosciences Center, led by Dr. Ramiro Arratia; the Center of Bio-Informatics and Integrative Biology, led by Dr. Danilo González; the Center for Integrative Medicine and Innovative Science, led by Dr. Luis Velásquez; and the Center of Vegetal Biotechnology, led by Dr. Reinaldo Campos.

These meetings allowed the members of the council to see the developments taking place in the university. This will help them better establish an agenda for the coming years, which will include visits from international experts, workshops for researchers and additional work for the council, among other activities.