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Fundación General CSIC and Fundación Cepsa hold the “Conectamos I + I” meeting in Zaragoza


Zaragoza hosted the conference “Conectamos I + I” today, at the facilities of the Institute of Carbochemistry (ICB) of the Spanish National Research Council (CSIC). Fundación General CSIC (FGCSIC) and Fundación Cepsa sponsor this initiative to promote the connection between academic research and industrial interests and the convergence of needs and benefits between the public and private sectors.

This first meeting is part of a series of conferences in which leading companies in innovation, and with consolidated practice in public-private collaboration projects, will show the academic community what their parameters are for determining whether a cooperative R&D&I project has potential and scope. For their part, researchers from different scientific and technical areas will have the opportunity to express the challenges they face when transferring their knowledge. From the exchange of reflections, points of view and experiences, the aim is to define the keys and good practices to achieve sustainable and strategic relationships.

The event began with a speech by the institutional delegate of the CSIC in Aragón, María Jesús Lázaro, who welcomed the participants and stressed the importance of this type of conference to promote relations between industry and researchers to jointly provide solutions to the challenges of the 21st century. Ramón Torrecillas San Millán, Managing Director of Fundación General CSIC, and Íñigo Díaz de Espada, Vice-President of Fundación Cepsa, then spoke to introduce the “Conectamos I + I” programme and stressed the importance of establishing meeting points between public research and business in order to foster the development of mutually beneficial relationships. “Only through joint reflection and mutual knowledge among all the agents involved in a collaborative project, will we ensure that the knowledge generated by the scientific community has a real impact on society and the market,” said Torrecillas.

Díaz de Espada thanked Isabel Suelves, María Jesús Lázaro and Juana Frontela, who have played a fundamental role in promoting this initiative, which is in line with the “commitment of Fundación Cepsa to promote, within its scientific-educational work, lines of research, studies and projects in companies at the service of society, to generate a positive impact through a fair ecological transition and responsible consumption”.

The event, which was led by the political scientist and Zaragoza University lecturer Cristina Monge, continued with the presentation of a series of public-private collaborative experiences in research and innovation, with the participation of Jesús Lázaro (Cepsa Research Centre), Guillermo Lázaro (project manager at BSH Innovation) and Jaime Cortina Coromina (head of Waste Gasification Solutions Development at SENER Ingeniería y Sistemas), on behalf of the companies; and Isabel Suelves, director of the Institute of Carbochemistry of the CSIC, as representative of public research. Each of the speakers explained the details of their experience as an entity in this type of public-private collaboration projects, highlighting the main difficulties encountered and offering some keys to overcome them. After these interventions, a discussion was opened between the speakers and the audience, which was extended in the subsequent coffee-networking session.

Fundación General CSIC and Fundación Cepsa also collaborate through the FGCSIC’s ComFuturo programme, a public-private partnership initiative aimed at attracting the best young research talent and enabling them to develop projects at CSIC centres. In its third edition, ComFuturo is part of the European Commission’s Marie Skłodowska-Curie Actions (MSCA) Cofund programme to attract international researchers.