Barcelona, first European iCapital

Last March 11, during the 2014 Innovation Convention, organized by the European Commission, Barcelona was named the first European Capital of Innovation. The Catalan capital has prevailed over finalists Grenoble and Groningen in a contest that also involved Paris, Espoo and Málaga. The winning project highlights the predominant role of the city in promoting new technologies and bringing together government bodies and citizens, in order to enhance sustainable economic growth and improve the people’s welfare. The award, endowed with € 500,000, will be used to expand and scale Barcelona’s efforts in innovation.

There is no doubt Barcelona has a lot to offer to its people and visitors: it is a great city to work in, to live and to enjoy and discover the beauty of life. The city is continuously reinventing itself and this creates and attracts talent. Outside, the Barcelona brand it is very positive as well.

However, the city it is suffering from the economic downturn and unemployment rates associated with Spain. How do local experts value the innovative capacity of Barcelona? Does the city deserve de award? Is Barcelona ready to become a world-leading region in innovation such as Silicon Valley? What it lacks?

Barcinno, an online platform to share the stories, knowledge & events of Barcelona’s startup and tech communities, made a round among different change makers, influencers and innovation practitioners to hear their story. They are Catalans, Spaniards and Internationals working at different sectors divided across three pillars: knowledge, government and industry. Jorge Juan Férnandez, Head of Academics at Moebio was among the experts interviewed.

The publication resumes the four big needs addressed by experts that Barcelona should solve to become an innovation hub and highlights the strengths of some of its clusters to create new opportunities for innovation. The report is divided in two parts. The first one is accessible here. The second one, here.

Findings needs to improve healthcare

There’s a quiet revolution going on in the field of medical device innovation across the world led by people who are creating affordable and elegantly designed devices that add value to existing medical processes and make them simpler, cheaper and more accessible.

To create those products, these change-makers first have to identify unmet medical needs within a clinical setting and then develop new business opportunities.

The 2013-2014 d·HEALTH fellow teams have ended their clinical immersion experience in neonatology, neuro-rehabilitation and arrhythmias. During two months of intensive observation on medical procedures and routines, each team has compiled a list of over 300 needs and currently they are in the process of narrowing these large lists down into the top needs to take forward into brainstorming and invention.

This video resumes how was their clinical immersion experience at three top hospitals in Barcelona.

Neonatology Team includes: Arnau Valls, Marc Rabaza, Susan Feitoza and Mattia Bosio

Neuro-rehabilitation Team includes: Markus Wilhelms, Immaculada Herrero, Àngel Calzada and Marc Benet

Arrhythmias Team includes: Lalis Fontcuberta, Mateu Pla, Roger Benet and Alfred Ramírez

Barcelona tops the list of best cities for higher education

Barcelona is one of the most cosmopolitan, modern, dynamic and stylish capitals in the world. It is ranked the sixth best urban area for business in Europe and the 5th best city in Europe for scientific production.

Now, The Times Higher Education Supplement has included Barcelona in the list of the top 18 university cities in the world. The survey has evaluated that Catalonia has 12 universities in total, with a student population of around 235,000. Of these, eight are situated in Barcelona, with three making the top 250 of the latest World University Rankings.

All these elements position Barcelona as one of the leading cities in the development of a global knowledge-based economy at present and in the coming years.

Evidences show that we were not wrong when we decided to base d·HEALTH Barcelona in this amazing city! By the way, if you want to know the cities that complete the list here is the article here.