Monday, 4 March 2013

Colombia, Medellin: the most innovative city

The city of Medellin, Colombia, has been voted the ‘most innovative city’ which take place in the ‘city of the year’ contest. The panel jury included Citi Group executives, the Wall Street Journal (WSJ) and the international centre Urban Land Institute (ULI). The matters assessed and which played a major role in the decision were: mass transport system, reduction of CO2 emissions, cultural spaces and work of municipal utilities companies. Regarding these, it has to be said that the public transportation is used by more than 500,000 people each day; there is also a public bike-share program; a new library and a cultural centre; a large outdoor escalator which allows to ride down a steep hillside, the size of a 28-story building; among others.

Medellin won against the other two contestants i.e. New York and Tel Aviv. The news were received and celebrated in the auditorium Guillermo Cano, the Alpujarra Administrative Centre, in Medellin, when Mayor Aníbal Gaviria confirmed the news. He explained that the city won because ‘it has to show the world innovations. Even over cities with larger budget.’

In April, The Journal Wall Street will be publishing a special segment on the city where apart from covering its history and some of the city’s images, it will also discuss its progress and potential. This is good news for Medellin, but also for Colombia. This may attract more (foreign) investments in the form of trade and/or R&D. There is no doubt that innovation goes hand in hand with IP and with the signing and ratification of mayor IP agreements that have recently happen in this country, we will be watching Colombia very closely to see how this country flourishes.

Source newspaper Portafolio.

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