IASP organized the 35th World Conference on Science Parks and Areas of Innovation hosted by the ISTT on September 2-5, 2018 in Isfahan, Iran
International Association of Science Parks (IASP) organized the “35th World Conference on Science Parks and Areas of Innovation”, which was hosted by the Isfahan Science and Technology Town (ISTT) at Isfahan Iran on September 2-5, 2018. The Conference was opened by Dr. Mansour Gholami, the Minister of Science, Research and Technology of Iran and Dr. Sorena Sattari, the Vice President for S&T of Iran. The conference attracted a large number of Science, Technology and Innovation (STI) experts and Science Parks Developers & Managers from over 50 nations and ambassadors of over 30 countries. The four-day conference aimed at paving the way for exchanging views among Science and Technology Parks around the world. This mega event also provided a platform to hold bilateral (B2B) talks between the managers of domestic and foreign science parks in cooperation.
It is pertinent to mention that ECO Science Foundation (ECOSF) contributed to this event as a one of the collaborators and supporters. On behalf of ECOSF, its President Prof. Dr. Manzoor Hussain Soomro participated in the conference as speaker in one of the sessions on 3rd September.
The IASP 2018 World Conference explored the role of Software Technology Parks and Area of Innovations in the formation of the innovation ecosystem and the sustainable development of cities. Prof. Klaus R. Kunzmann from Gremany was the keynote speaker in the opening session of the event, he is known for his extraordinary research work on innovative urban policy and European spatial planning. Prof. Kunzman in his keynote talk, underlined the role innovative urban policy, creativity, knowledge and the arts for spatial and endogenous economic development of sustainable and smart cities for the future.
Mr. Joseph Miquel Pique, Secretary General IASP in his welcoming address highlighted that IASP network is global platform that connects our members, and this World Conference creates an unparalleled opportunity for making international connections, exchanging knowledge about our local ecosystems, and learning from each other to become truly global. He encouraged all science park managers and other innovation professionals from around the world to increase their networking and make new connections to strengthen Science Parks around the globe.
Dr. Mansour Gholami, the Minister of Science, Research and Technology of Iran highlighted the progress made by Iran in developing the Science and Technology Parks in the Country. Science and technology parks have played a very important role in the national development of S&T sector in Iran, he said.
Dr. Sorena Sattari, the Vice President for S&T of Iran in his elucidated the strong commitments and strategies by the Government of Iran to strengthen the STI sector of Iran, where STI parks can play critical role in achieving the desired goals.
It is pertinent to mention here that ECOSF and Isfahan Regional Center for Technology Business Incubators & Science Parks Development (IRIS) - under the auspices of UNESCO signed a MoU in April 2017 to strengthen the mutual collaboration in development S&T Parks, Incubation Center and promotion of Innovative and Entrepreneurial Initiatives in ECO region.
During the conference, Prof. Dr. Manzoor Hussain Soomro President ECOSF participated in one of the sessions on the “Global Alliance for Specialization”, which was moderated by Ms. Ebba Lund – the Chief Operating Officer of IASP. Prof. Soomro delivered his talk on “ECO Science Foundation (ECOSF) – a Platform for Promoting Science, Technology and Innovation through Development of STI Parks in the ECO Region”. Prof. Soomro stressed over the need for development of STI Parks in the ECO region, as they are crucial for developing qualified manpower and STEM workforce to respond to global and local challenges of water, climate change, energy and food security. Among the ECO member countries, Iran and Turkey have made significant progress in development of STI Parks, he added. He therefore urged that Iran and Turkey through their experiences in STI parks can share their best practices in the development and management of successful STI parks with other ECO member states. He shared the partnerships and collaboration of ECOSF with various international institutions and organizations for internationalization and for drawing mutual benefits . He particularly mentioned Asian Innovation Forum & Asian STI Think Tanks Network (ASTN), IAP SEP, La main a la pate of France and the ECOSF collaboration with China Association for Science and Technology- CAST under the “Belt and Road” initiative of China. Prof. Soomro concluded that ECOSF can be a promising space to synergize strengths of ECO countries to ensure rapid and robust development of STI parks and to promote STI in the ECO region, both at national and regional levels to realize the ECO vision 2025 and UN Sustainable Development Goals (Agenda 2030). He invited IASP to play a catalyst role for promotion of the concept of STI parks in the ECO member countries.