New project to develop scientific diplomacy for Barcelona
Scitech Diplohub aims to "promote Barcelona's knowledge ecosystem abroad" beginning with Boston, Tel Aviv and Shanghai
Scitech Diplohub is the name of a new project backed by more than a hundred renowned scientists, engineers and professionals in international relations that aims to implement a strategy of scientific and technological diplomacy for Barcelona.
According to Scitech Diplohub's executive director, Alexis Roig, the objective of the initiative is to "promote scientific diplomacy, promote Barcelona's knowledge ecosystem abroad, and work with our community of talent around the world that was trained in the city's universities."
The not-for-profit, private and apolitical initiative is a necessity Roig insisted: "It cannot be the case that in Barcelona, where we have scientific potential and which is also a global city, we do not have our own scientific diplomacy."
The promoters of the project say that Barcelona will be the first city in the world to implement its own strategy of scientific and technological diplomacy. A first task will be to create a scientific and technological envoy who can represent the Catalan capital in other cities.
A pilot project establishing scientific and technological relations will begin with the cities of Boston, Tel Aviv and Shanghai, where the diplomat "will connect opportunities in the Barcelona ecosystem with those in the ecosystems of the destination cities," said Roig.
Among those backing the initiative are heads of universities and major research centers and hospitals, such as Josep Maria Campistol from the Clínic hospital, Joan Comella from the Vall d'Hebron Research Institute, Josep Tabernero from the Vall d'Hebron Institute of Oncology, and Bonaventura Clotet from the IrsiCaixa Aids Research Institute.
Other influential figures supporting the project are former ministers, such as Andreu Mas-Colell, former city mayors, such as Narcís Serra, Jordi Hereu and Xavier Trias, as well as business associations and CEOs of some of Barcelona's main start-ups.