The event will count per day with the participation of 250 people from different sectors.

Government, academy, private companies, civil society and sustainability of companies will present the different perspectives to face the present and future challenges of the country in the National Congress of Innovation, which will be held in August.

For each module there will be a presentation of three success stories and a panel with representatives of each sector where ideas will be opposed regarding the issues raised by the moderator.

Wellness and Health 

The discussion will focus on three topics: the value chain for the development of innovative products or services in health; the advantages and limitations that the country has in this regard; and how the way of working in organized groups helps to generate more exchanges within the same organizations.

“We are going to discuss about what barriers exist to innovation and how many times it is due to ignorance. The way to work in clusters is precisely that: to generate bonds of trust and to use legitimate criteria such as international quality controls that try to equate everyone in that sense,” explained Gabriela Couto, moderator of the wellness and health module, and president of CR Biomed, a cluster of biotechnology and medical devices.

The panel will have the participation of José Vega, researcher of the National Nanotechnology Laboratory (Lanotec); Charles Sánchez, executive director of the Incense Foundation (Funin); Roberto De Mezerville, of Establishment Labs; Rigoberto Blanco, from the CCSS; and a representative of the Ministry of Public Health (Minsa).

Environment and Energy

The module will focus on the decarbonization of the country, new forms of clean and efficient vehicular mobility, and transformations in the current generation model.

“In Costa Rica we can talk a lot about the environment, about 25% of protected areas and all those stories that are valuable, but it is not necessarily where innovation has to focus. Then, the space will gravitate on the commitment that the country is assuming with great force, and that somehow throws the challenge to the world, and forces us to show that we are serious, which is the whole issue of the decarbonization “, said the moderator Felipe Carazo, executive director of the Development of the Central Volcanic Mountain Range Foundation (Fundecor).

The module will begin with a presentation of each position and then a discussion panel will be opened with the presence of Andrea Meza, director of climate change at the Ministry of Environment and Energy (Minae); José Castro, scientific director of Ad Astra Rocket Company; Irene Cañas, sustainability director of the Costa Rican Electricity Institute (ICE); Jairo Quirós, professor and researcher at the University of Costa Rica (UCR); and María José Gutiérrez, co-founder of the Urban Sustainability Center.

Smart Society

With the fourth industrial revolution a new type of society is emerging. Some call it the smart society, that where all the requirements of sustainable development are met and the paradigms are broken.

This is the vision of Ronald Bolaños, founder of the Internet of Things Consortium (Mecsoft) and moderator of the panel discussion on this area at the congress, where Luis Adrián Salazar, Minister of Science and Technology, will participate; Mainor Molina, mayor of Greece; Jeannette Alvarado, professor and researcher at the Technological Institute of Costa Rica (ITCR); and Albán Sánchez, founder of Lantern Technologies.

“We will talk about a society that should be more friendly to the environment, a development that improves the quality of life of all citizens. An intelligent society for me is not only the one that develops in this of artificial intelligence and robotics, but it is also intelligent because it makes wise use about the resources of the planet and achieves a social and environmental balance,” said Bolaños.


Humberto Gómez, a specialist in technological innovation, will moderate the agri-food section with a different format from the rest, since he wants to create a space where he can show how to generate innovation in a context where it is increasingly difficult to do it successfully.

“What we want is that each participant share an idea of how they try to be innovative from where they are, the sector they work in, and tell us where the bottlenecks and difficulties to innovate are, and what can be done to improve the procedure,” explained Gómez.

The space will feature interventions-type exposition by Ricardo Pérez, general manager of Las Canelas; Emilia Umaña, junior production consultant at Nama Café; Carmela Velázquez, director of the National Center for Food Science and Technology (Cita-UCR); and Bernal Corrales, general manager of CoopeNaranjo.

The four moderators will route the modules to the search of solutions, of applicable proposals that guide the generation of new proposals in their fields that mark the route that the country should follow.

“We are talking about a National Congress of Innovation, and I think it is key to highlight that there is a determined effort to bring to the table a space that addresses the issue of innovation. I think that Costa Rica has at times been very innovative and now we are facing a reality that requires that innovation, “said Carazo.

“I am married to the idea of ​​this congress and of an innovation with purpose. Innovation has to have a purpose and a social and environmental sense. Secondly, we must create spaces where we can discuss what that vision is, which is the country we want, because Costa Rica does not really have that “, said Bolaños.

The event is organized by Proinnova of the UCR and will take place on August 28th and 29th in the Franklin Chang Díaz auditorium of CONARE.

Tickets are available until August 17th at Proinnova and have a cost of ₡45.000 for the general public and ₡35.000 for students. If you buy at least five tickets, a discount of ₡5.000 per ticket will be applied.

The event will be supported by the following sponsoring entities: Fundación UCR, ICE Group through its Kölbi brand, Huawei company providing information technology and telecommunications solutions, and Wenox Media as an audiovisual production company.

Additionally, with the support of the Ministry of Science, Technology and Telecommunications (MICITT) as a strategic partner.

Valeria López Sedó

Slide background
Universidad de Costa Rica - UCR

Vicerrectoria de Investigación
Proinnova UCR

Universidad de Costa Rica © Copyright 2016