Innovation Forums: The Call for a Technology & Innovation Ecosystem in Baja California
Contributing Writer: Freddy Angeles, Contract manufacturing industry and innovation advisor.
In September, Tijuana EDC along with CANIETI and Index Tijuana joined forces to run a series of forums to foster the integration of all innovation leaders within the region, building networks and influencing the creation of policies in the field of industry, technological and scientific innovation.
The topic for the second forum was “Research and Development.” Participants identified the need to improve communication between the research centers and manufacturing companies established in Baja California, home of the largest manufacturing base in Mexico.
The forum was a packed house with participation obviously driven by an interest in being part of an innovation ecosystem in the region. Participants are aware of the need to make a jump from traditional manufacturing environment to an innovation center that creates value, technology, services, and advanced manufacturing.
After the first forum, participants have come out with various proposals to create a communication system in which all the different aspects of the industry are connected in order to know and see what others are doing and how each might be of help. Another proposal was to map the different projects underway at research centers and map the requirements of industry in the region.
The objective of innovation forums, which has 5 parts, is to launch and incubate a culture of technology, entrepreneurism, and communication in the region to bring together the different elements in the industry such as manufacturing firms, academic institutions, research centers, entrepreneurs, government, and business organizations to create an ecosystem of innovation.
This is the initial phase of a mid-term plan of Ignitus that, years ago, spotted the opportunity to establish a prototyping center, or a tech shop, satisfying the needs of many of many of the players in the region, such as the big industry, the small industry, entrepreneurs and inventors, academic institutions and research centers. The project includes machinery that used to create prototypes, measure development, compare efficiency, and create new technologies.