From the realities of cyber security to the challenges of smart cities and innovation routes that are open to the larger society – this is the programme that will be offered this year at the third and already one of the greatest forums in the Baltic Sea region: the Vilnius Innovation Forum titled “Innovation Drift”. On 12-13 October, not only will the globally elite representatives of science and technology come under the same roof in Vilnius, but also the representatives of international business companies, alongside the most famous academics and businessmen of Lithuania.
“We are living in the age of innovations. The way we live, what we consume, how we treat ourselves for illnesses, where we travel or even what we eat has changed beyond recognition during the past ten years alone. Questions about how we are going to change next, what we will create, as well as what and why and how we will jointly respond to the new global changes that arise, remains open, yet also necessitate an answer. And these are precisely the questions that we will seek answers for together with various professionals and the public,” said the Minister of Economy, Mindaugas Sinkevičius.
During “Innovation Drift”, significant attention will be given to the field of cyber security, to the potential challenges caused by technologies, robotics, transport, space technologies and nanoparticle technologies, as well as to smart cities. At the Forum, we will discuss the issues of innovation and competitiveness in companies, health technologies, start-ups and a number of other topics.
According to the Minister of the Economy, it is only through the joint meetings of professionals in various areas that not only the need for changes but also the necessity for the creation of new opportunities can be met.
“First of all, innovations are born from need: the need for a higher quality life, or a better, faster and more comfortable life. They are created by curious and open minds both in Lithuania and worldwide, who are seeking to solve very concrete issues and to facilitate the activities performed in everyday life and work. Business usually recognises such a niche; meanwhile, science offers the solution for how to fill it. Quality is created when the professionals in various areas act together,” he said with conviction.
The best known participants in “Innovation Drift” this year include a representative of the NASA Ames Research Centre, Rose Grymes; global-level Futurist, Ray Hammond; the Project Manager of “Silicon Vikings” from the Silicon Valley, Eilif Trondsen; Mike Othworth from the “Innventure” company who has worked on the commercialisation of “Procter & Gamble” technologies; representatives of the “Hyperloop One” company involved in creating new generation transport systems; the Project Initiator of the “Smart Factory”, Hans Praat; Director of the robotics company “Blue Ocean Robotics”, Claus Risager; and others. This year, the participants in the Forum are inviting to listen to over 50 interesting speakers, most of them from abroad. It is foreseen that over 1500 individuals will visit the Forum.
Previously, the Forum was successfully held in 2013 and 2015, when it attracted hundreds of the top businessmen, creators and representatives of worldwide famous organisations; and this year it is returning with the new task of encouraging collaborations among professionals in various areas.
“During the Forum, we will not only talk about the under-explored opportunities to collaborate, but will also create real opportunities to expand collaborations and partnerships. This is a contact fair, which will include visits to innovative companies operating in Lithuania, discussions and informal communications that will allow the participants to make new contacts,” M. Sinkevičius stated.
The Forum will be held at the initiative of the Ministry of the Economy and the Agency for Science, Innovation and Technology (MITA) and will take place on 12-13 October in the LITEXPO Lithuanian Exhibition and Congress Centre.