The BISITE Research Group was one of the promoters, along with other institutions, of the third congress for the elaboration of the White Paper on the Development of Salamanca, coordinated by the newspaper La Gaceta de Salamanca.
The conference was held on 3 November at the Palacio de Congresos and was attended by more than 40 experts, entrepreneurs, institutions and companies. The aim of this event was to discuss the opportunities that Salamanca currently offers in terms of business, innovation and research, with the aim of providing those present with ideas and experiences for the appropriate development of the province.
After a welcome address by the Mayor and the President of the Provincial Council, the conference was organised in six round tables. Each of them, made up of different experts, analysed different aspects, such as quality production in the agri-food sector, alternatives to the energy crisis, opportunities to invest in research in Salamanca and employment niches, among other topics.
The director of the BISITE Research Group and president of the AIR Institute, Juan Manuel Corchado, participated in the round table "Public funds, investments and opportunities to invest in research and cutting-edge technology". Together with the representatives of institutions and companies such as the Junta de Castilla y León, the University of Salamanca, IBSAL, the Pulsed Laser Centre, CaixaBank, Aqualia and FCC, Corchado defended the potential of the province of Salamanca in terms of its possibilities to develop as a technology centre. "If the right spaces are created for people to return and companies to grow, Salamanca, which already has powerful multidisciplinary teams, will be very attractive," said the director of BISITE.
To advance the technological and innovative development of the province, Sonia Martín Pérez, Director General of Healthcare Planning of the Junta, and Blanca Ares González, Director General of Universities and Research at the same organisation, proposed " investing in talent and human capital". Both were involved in the task of opening new sources of funding to meet the objectives and be prepared for new business projects that come to Salamanca.
As far as the University of Salamanca is concerned, the Vice-Rector for Research and Transfer, José Miguel Mateos Roco, announced the creation of an Office for Research Strategy and Impact to take advantage of the funding received by the USAL and "offer services to both researchers and society". In addition, María Dolores Rodríguez Frías, director of the ever-expanding Pulsed Laser Centre, expressed her openness and desire to collaborate with USAL. The IBSAL, the Biomedical Research Institute that supports innovation and technological transformation, was also present, represented by its Innovation Coordinator, Francisco J. López Hernández, who requested more resources for the province.
In conclusion, the general agreement of the participants at the round table and the event promoted by BISITE was that there is optimism for the future of Salamanca, however, adequate resources and funding are needed in order to attract companies and provide them with the technological leap forward. This was confirmed by the representatives present from CaixaBank, Aqualia and FCC, requesting the support of the Administration, trust in innovation and the strengthening of R+D.
In short, a conference that advocates the prosperous development of the province and is very useful for sharing experiences and opinions, which will be included in a publication that La Gaceta de Salamanca will share with the administrations involved.
Images: Almeida (La Gaceta)