Today I had the pleasure of participating in the very first UNOPS Innovation Boost at Ideon Science Park in Lund! This is a side event to the Dadlihack at Antigua and Barbuda during the weekend 7-9 of February, solving issues regarding disaster relief.

How can we handle the growing environmental challenges we are facing, such as hurricanes, in a sustainable way? How can we use the natural resources of sun, sea and sand available at islands like Antigua and Barbuda?

For four hours a group of participants from UNOPS, Lund university, small start-ups like Solar Bora, bigger corporations like IKEA and Sony, and of course the support systems from Ideon Science Park in Lund, among others, got to brainstorm and try to find solutions. We were divided into groups with different focuses and based on my work at Solar Bora I was of course part of the group focusing on the resources related to the sun! As an engineer I have a technical approach and my primary idea is to look at the technical solutions available. Others in my group thought of other things, which led to interesting discussions and widened my perspective. Since I am working in a start-up, I found it interesting to hear the perspective from the bigger corporations, universities and other organisations where decision processes are longer, policies play a bigger role and public procurements are parts of the everyday work.

The problems at Antigua and Barbuda are very different from what we see here in Sweden, but they are far from unique. To find ways to tackle them and to reach sustainable solutions, we need to work together. Hopefully, our workshop here is Sweden could contribute to the work performed during the Dadlihack!

It was an interesting event with a relevant topic, and the commitment from all participants was great. Since it was the first time for this workshop, we were all trying to figure out how to do it in the best way and therefore got a lot of freedom to do so. Thank you Rachelle Lacharité, Sarah Emond and team for an interesting and inspiring evening!
-Linnea Bergman, Solar Bora

Science Park Mjärdevi is a part of UNOPS centers in Sweden.
It’s a great achievement, getting one of 20 global UNOPS centers to Sweden.
– 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 says Ideon Science Park CEO, Mia Rolf.

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.
Read more about it here 

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.