Interview with LCCI Senior Officer Nicolas Iordanou
What are the main goals and main priorities of the Limassol Chamber of Commerce & Industry in relation to the field of Research and Innovation?
We take seriously the trends and dynamics of the times, such as the rapid technological and digital development, changes in the wider business environment, the great challenges and prospects of the business innovation sector and the flow of the global economy. At the same time, we align ourselves with the priorities and policies of the Republic of Cyprus and the European Union (EU) in relation to encouraging the promotion of young entrepreneurship and strengthening competitiveness. Based on the needs of our members and of modern-day entrepreneurship, our strategic goals include:
- Promoting business innovation, research and improving the Limassol ecosystem.
- Upgrading of services offered to members
- Promoting the creation of a Science and Technology Park
- Utilizing opportunities for Chamber participation in European and other programs
- Developing and expanding a network of important partners in Cyprus and abroad
In this context, I am mentioning the latest success of our Chamber, ensuring its participation as a member of the international network called Mediterranean Regional Information Network (MedRIN).
What exactly is the MedRIN Network?
MedRIN was established after serious consultation of important organisations in Europe, Africa and the USA active in the field of earth observation and other similar areas. This is a new network covering the Mediterranean region and is directly interconnected with the framework of the global Forest Cover and Land Dynamics (GOFC-GOLD) observations. It is to be noted that NASA has played a leading role in establishing MedRIN and its assistance in coordinating cooperation between network members, admitting new members and setting priorities is also essential. Among MedRIN's actions is the regular briefing of its members on the latest developments in Earth Observation applications based on data from NASA and ESA (European Space Agency) satellites. Moreover, the network aims to support response to regional and local challenges as outlined in the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
The objectives of this newly created network are based on priority issues of interest to Mediterranean countries, extending to neighbouring regions. Such include the development of systems to better coordinate and link monitoring throughout the Mediterranean, strengthening and upgrading regional/national land monitoring networks in relation to urban and residential areas, rural areas and rugged areas, fire risks, earthquakes, floods, land and water management, etc. The benefits for the Mediterranean region are significant as the network is accessible to all and is expected to soon start producing results and services for the well-being of citizens and the sustainability of resources.
A key pillar is the close cooperation of MedRIN members and Mediterranean countries in addressing the challenges through joint actions and strategic synergies in the implementation of research and other projects. Present day participants. The current members of MedRIN include Universities, Research Centers and other institutions from Greece, Cyprus, Israel, Italy and other Mediterranean countries, in addition to world-class organizations such as NASA and ESA. MedRIN members include the Cyprus University of Technology and the Eratosthnes Centre of Excellence, with which our Chamber maintains an excellent relationship
How does the Chamber benefit from its participation?
The participation of our Chamber as a member of the MedRIN network is, I believe, a remarkable success in terms of the expansion of its partners and the international recognition of the work we have been doing in recent years in the field of Research, Innovation and European Programmes. We are, until now, the only Chamber of Commerce and Industry of the network and we are expected as an organization of members to assist in the interconnection of MedRIN with other Chambers and businesses inside and outside Cyprus. There is prestige involved in collaboration with organizations such as NASA, the European Space Agency and leading Universities and this opens up prospects for the further development of joint activities directly related to business innovation in many areas.
For example, benefits can include the joint development of cutting-edge technologies to address the various challenges facing our region, the exchange and transfer of know-how and the creation of strategic consortia to make proposals for the funding for projects that are part of research, innovation and education. At the same time, participation in MedRIN, highlights the multidimensional role of our Chamber and we can look forward to the creation of new and modern services for our members and society.