On 15 July, Ferrovial Services and Madrid’s city government together launched the Madrid Smart Lab programme at Madrid Emprende headquarters. The programme is being headed by Ferrovial Servicios’ Cities Centre of Competence.
Madrid Smart Lab will choose up to 14 innovative solutions associated with 2 challenges defined by Madrid city government: improve citizens’ quality of life and promote urban mobility. The programme includes training for entrepreneurs and an incubation period to develop their initiatives. The projects will then potentially be tested out in the Fuencarral-El Pardo district in 2015. Entrepreneurs interested in participating can submit their projects and solutions via MadridSmartLab.com until 30 September.
Madrid Smart Lab is a unique initiative in that it represents a pioneering approach to effectively promote urban innovation through an equal partnership between the city government, entrepreneurs and the services company. We all have essential and complementary roles:
- City government: define the city’s strategic framework, promote economic and social development, and contribute the infrastructure to roll out innovative solutions.
- Entrepreneur: provide solutions that increase citizens’ satisfaction and participation, while also creating wealth and employment.
- Services company: define new service delivery models, taking into account each city’s priorities and the best solutions.
However, the mere sum of the three parts is not itself a guarantee for success. There are at least two additional requirements:
- That the city government and the company have the same vision of urban innovation. At Ferrovial Servicios, we fully share Madrid’s pragmatic approach, implemented by supporting entrepreneurship and specific initiatives that can be executed in the short term.
- That the company and the entrepreneur speak the same language. At Ferrovial, we are particularly well-placed in this connection since our culture encourages personal initiative. In fact, Ferrovial was founded by Rafael del Pino y Moreno, an entrepreneur.
We are excited about the Madrid Smart Lab programme and convinced that it will contribute to Madrid’s development. The success of this type of initiative will strengthen ties between companies, city governments and entrepreneurs, to benefit citizens. Our objective is for Ferrovial Servicios to be viewed not just as a company, but as a partner for transforming the city.