The Innovation Forum, a global network of researchers and entrepreneurs, launched its first branch in Switzerland, with a conference exploring the theme of “Disruptive Innovation for a sustainable future”. The event was addressed by top-level representatives from Ecole Polytechnic Federale de Lausanne (EPFL), IMD Business School, University of Lausanne, Novartis, VentureLab, BioRN Cluster and CEOs of various start-ups.
Over 300 participants attended the conference hosted at the Rolex Learning Centre at EPFL.
Dr Adrienne Corboud Fumagalli, VP Innovation & Technology Transfer EPFL, stated: “Innovation has become the buzzword of our times, everyone, everywhere wants to innovate. But true innovation is not an easy task! It cannot be planned neither processed. It is a state of mind which we need to encourage through education for our students and researchers. It is about encouraging risk taking without stigmatizing failure. Only by instilling a culture of innovation, with a lot of hard work, imagination, creativity, and focus on creating value will we enable a sustainable future.”
“true innovation is not an easy task! It cannot be planned neither processed. It is a state of mind which we need to encourage”
Dr Sachiko Hirosue, Co-founder of Biodesign.cc observed: “This new initiative resonates strongly with our alternative creative approach to innovation. Biodesign for the Real World is an international transdisciplinary project on water quality. We use open source Do-It-Yourself tools and crowd-sourced mapping to prototype, field test, and disseminate data. We share our work through workshops, performances, design and art. We build communities. Technologies can only be empowering if you know how to hack them creatively.”
“Technologies can only be empowering if you know how to hack them creatively.”
Manuel Fankhauser, President Innovation Forum Lausanne, said: “We are delighted to mark the establishment of the first Swiss branch of the global Innovation Forum. This conference aims to showcase how innovation is a multidisciplinary activity, fostered by synergies between academia, industry and policy makers. Lausanne is at the epi-centre of many disruptive technologies both in Switzerland and globally.”