IASP World Conference2018-09-10
Science parks and sustainable development: global innovation ecosystem professionals work towards achieving the UN Sustainable Development Goals at the 35th IASP World Conference in Isfahan, Iran.
Sustainable development is at the very top of the global agenda, and science parks are uniquely placed to harness the power of technology, innovation and entrepreneurship to help build sustainable cities across the world.
The IASP World Conference brings together a powerful international network to shine a spotlight on all the ways in which innovation ecosystems can support sustainability and create a better future. A global gathering of 45 speakers and almost 400 delegates, including leading government, business and innovation figures from 33 countries, the last few days in Isfahan have shown just what can be achieved when innovators and innovation managers from across the world collaborate.
Hosted and organised by Isfahan Science and Technology Town (Isfahan, Iran) from September 2nd – 5th 2018 under the theme “Towards sustainable cities and communities: Fostering innovation ecosystems”, the event offered new insights into how science parks and other areas of innovation can continue to lead their innovation communities (businesses, entrepreneurs, researchers and technicians) as well as their cities and regions towards a more sustainable future.
The Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) are a key tool for tackling the challenges of rapid urbanisation, and cities can play an important role in the implementation of SDGs. Science and technology parks are increasingly connected and intertwined with cities, and speakers explored how they contribute to the development of sustainable urban environments, how they support entrepreneurship and nurture new talent, and how they are working with their cities to solve the challenges facing their communities.
Held at the historic Abbasi Hotel, the event showcased the flourishing innovation community in Isfahan and marks the first time that an IASP World Conference has taken place in Iran. This year’s event is both a celebration of international collaboration, and a sign of IASP’s commitment to support science parks everywhere in the world and through them, to encourage the sustainable economic development that can change lives.
The event began with an impressive opening ceremony led by the IASP President, Josep Piqué (La Salle Technova, Barcelona) who officially opened IASP’s 35th World Conference alongside IASP Director General Luis Sanz.
The keynote speaker was Klaus Kunzmann (Germany), a global expert on innovative urban policy and city and regional development. He encouraged science parks and areas of innovation to focus on knowledge development: to open their doors and work closely with universities and knowledge clusters, and also to make sure they attract green industries from around the world.
The full programme is available on the conference website iasp2018isfahan.com
New IASP Executive BoardThe IASP General Assembly was held on September 4th, where the election of a new President and Board was ratified.
Outgoing IASP President Josep Pique, Executive President of La Salle Technova, Spain, handed over the Presidency to his successor, Paul Krutko, CEO of Ann Arbor SPARK, USA. Mr Piqué began his term in 2016 at the IASP World Conference in Moscow, Russia, and led the Opening Ceremony at IASP Isfahan and officiated at the General Assembly before formally handing his presidential medal for Mr Krutko during the Closing Ceremony on September 5th.
Mr Krutko already has a long history with IASP, and begins his term as President following two years as Vice President. He leads the IASP International Board, which is made up of 18 members from 13 different countries and meets twice a year.
Herbert Chen (TusPark, China) also joins the Executive Board as Vice President of IASP. Mr Chen is also Director of the IASP China Office.
Caroline Drabe, CEO of Västerås Science Park, Sweden, and previously a member of the International Board of Directors, was also ratified as Treasurer of IASP. She takes over from outgoing Treasurer Hauwa Yabani, Managing Director of Abuja Technology Village, Nigeria.
New IASP International Board of DirectorsNew Presidents of two of IASP’s seven regional divisions, and new members of the International Board of Directors were also elected during the IASP General Assembly.
The new Presidents are;
- North American Division President: Charles Lambert, Bromont Scientific Park, Canada
- West Asia North Africa (WANA) Division President: Lamia Benmakhlouf, Technopark Casablanca, Morocco
IASP’s missionTo be the global network for science and technology parks and other areas of innovation, driving growth, internationalisation and effectiveness for our members.
Main facts and figures
Regional divisions: 7
African Division – Asia Pacific Division - European Division – Eurasian Division – Latin American Division – North American Division – WANA (West Asia North Africa Division)
World Headquarters: Malaga, Spain
Branch office: Beijing, China
About Isfahan Science and Technology TownThe conference is organised and hosted by Full IASP member Isfahan Science and Technology Town (ISTT), the first Iranian member of IASP and home of the UNESCO Centre for Technology Incubator and Science Park Development (IRIS). Located next to Isfahan University of Technology, ISTT has become a pioneering model for the management of technology incubators and science parks across the country. ISTT is an environment in which research centres, manufacturing and service companies, and R&D centres of governmental organizations have conglomerated into a vast technology town.
About the International Association of Science Parks and Areas of Innovation (IASP)IASP is the worldwide network of science parks and areas of innovation, founded in 1984. With 347 members in 77 countries, IASP connects professionals managing science, technology and research parks (STPs) and other areas of innovation from across the globe, and provides services that drive growth and effectiveness for members.
IASP members enhance the competitiveness of companies and entrepreneurs in their cities and regions, and contribute to global economic development through innovation, entrepreneurship, and the transfer of knowledge and technology.
IASP is an NGO in Special Consultative Status with the Economic and Social Council of the United Nations and a founding member of the World Alliance for Innovation (WAINOVA). For further information about IASP, please visit www.iasp.ws.