In October, the FN organization UNOPS was inaugurated in Ideon Science Park, in Lund. UNOPS is an FN operation, that procure material to support FN actions around the globe. UNOPS have a total budget of 1,8 Billion dollars a year and are facilitating different projects to address the global challenges, not the least within climate, migrants and war scenarios. UNOPS will be a great way for innovative Swedish companies to contribute in solving the greatest challenges of our time, and at the same time scale their business.
It’s a great achievement, getting one of 20 global UNOPS centers to Sweden. Ideon Scinece Park CEO, Mia Rolf and her colleagues have been working very hard to get here.
– After scouting for an innovation HUB specialized in deep tech innovations, UNOPS approached Ideon Science Park and we made an agreement to work together to set up a global innovation, she tells us. The center will be connected to 15-20 other UNOPS centers around the globe.
– It took almost 2 years of convincing the national innovation government to put the necessary decisions together. A pre study took among the stakeholders took place in winter/spring 2019, which ended up with recommendations on how to move further.
The grand opening took place on October 2019, honored by the presence of minister of industry and entrepreneurship, Mr Ibrahim Baylan and Executive director Grete Faremo, UNOPS amongst others. Read more about the launch.
The purpose and vision with the Lund based UNOPS are to source Swedish innovations to help solve global challenges – and avoid catastrophes like lack of energy, no clean water – or lack of medicine, food, shelter, we may use these sustainable solutions in other areas too. But the UNOPS centers around the world are of course scouting the whole globe for solutions, to make sure they find the best ones.
– Best scenario is attracting them to Lund for further development– so that they become market and UNOPS procurement ready.
UNOPS could become a real asset to the innovation community in Sweden, sais Mia. For innovative SMEs this is a great opportunity to build relations with the UN/UNOPS, and a chance to scale their business globally – and at the same time to good and contribute to solving the global catastrophes facing a lot of humans.
– It is really important for us to scout the innovation hubs to find the startups carrying solutions that are relevant. We plan to arrange open pitch days a couple of times every year to match procurement needs with the right solutions.
During Slush, held in Helsinki, in the end of last week, UNOPS Executive Director Grete Faremo today launched the organization’s first innovation challenge to advance resilient infrastructure in the face of climate change. Read and apply.
If you, when reading this text, feel like your innovation would be relevant to the UNOPS incubator, please contact Science Park Mjärdevi, and we will connect you to the right people. The same applies if you are a company that would like to engage as a partner in UNOPS. A website will be launched in short.
So, lets but our brilliant minds together, and start to act.
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