- 160 students from the School of Mines, divided into 33 groups, presented their proposals for three challenges associated with power transmission and road concessions business units.
- ISA selected three winning groups, one for each challenge, and awarded financial recognition to their members.
The Tour de la Innovación, Novus Colombia (Innovation Tour) is the open innovation initiative that connects entrepreneurial business challenges with innovative solution proposals by students at the School of Mines of the Universidad Nacional de Colombia, Medellin Campus.
160 students participated in this second edition, divided into 33 groups, who presented their proposed solutions to the three challenges posed by ISA in terms of cost optimization for biomass imaging; optimization of designs or construction methods to achieve more competitive projects in terms of cost and time, mitigating environmental, social and property impacts; and use of alternative materials or waste reduction in project construction.
Throughout the process, over six months, the students were accompanied by teachers from the Center for Development and Innovation (CDi) of the School of Mines of the UNAL, Medellin Campus, along with about 20 mentors from ISA, according to the challenges assigned.
The three winning teams, one for each challenge, were announced in the middle of a virtual event in which a conversation was held with the participation of Agostinho João Almeida, Corporate Innovation Director at ISA; Verónica Botero Fernández, dean of the School of Mines; Walter Lugo Ruiz Castañeda, director of the Center for Development and Innovation, and Santiago Arango Aramburo, professor of the Department of Computer and Decision Sciences, to reflect on the strengthening of open innovation.
“Young people are the talent that inspires us to lead transformation processes. Consequently, expanding our open innovation ecosystem responds to Innovation and Articulation as fundamental pillars of the ISA 2030 strategy VIDA: Verde (Green), Innovación (Innovation), Desarrollo (Development) and Articulación (Articulation), to take advantage of the opportunities of new trends and seal strategic alliances that favor the fulfillment of objectives, while generating a process of growth and learning for both parties”, Olga Patricia Castaño, ISA’s Chief Strategy Officer, said.
Similarly, Verónica Botero Fernández, dean of the School of Mines of the UNAL, Medellín Campus, emphasized that: “the challenges posed in the Tour Novus transcend the mere elements of the problem, for example, the reduction of costs in the capture of Lidar type images to quantify biomass or the optimization of construction methods to be more competitive in terms of cost and time, because in any of the cases they refer to issues that occur in a territory with environmental and social complexities that must be explicitly considered when proposing a solution.”. The Novus Tour is the materialization of the manifesto of engineering for life: engineers proposing solutions to real problems in complex territories, under conditions of uncertainty”.
The winning students, in addition to receiving an economic incentive of COP 5 million for each team, will have the opportunity to accompany the implementation process for their proposals.
This type of initiative demonstrates the value of the articulation between business and academia to promote collaborative work, project management and innovation capacity, both of students and the organization, generating the transformation of ideas into realities that promote a sustainable future.
- Challenge 1: cost optimization for biomass imaging.
- Winner: Pased Innova team – Proposal: “Internal implementation in software for image analysis.”
- Challenge 2: optimization of designs or construction methods to achieve more competitive projects in terms of cost and time, mitigating environmental, social and property impacts.
- Winner: Emprendedores del Mañana team – Proposal: “Heavy-lift drones”.
- Challenge 3: use of alternative materials or reduction of waste in project construction.
Winner: Redising team – Proposal: “Creation of construction materials stronger than steel from wood residues”.