„Switzerland is open for business and innovation – welcome to Switzerland”
These were the opening words from Dr Gabriele Schwarz, Module Leader of the EMBA UZH Learning Expedition Switzerland. Switzerland was just named the most innovative country in the European Innovation Index (https://interactivetool.eu/EIS/EIS_2.html). Participants in the EMBA UZH with focus on Digital Transformation are currently on a learning expedition on our home turf to learn about the innovation eco-system in Switzerland with a particular focus on the Zurich/Zug metropolitan area.
After an introduction to innovation principles by Dr Gabriele Schwarz participants explored Artificial Intelligence with Reik Leiterer from ExoLabs and with Haig Peter from IBM. “Data is nothing without context” Haig said and illustrated the development from bits to neurons to quantum technology and the application in current projects. After that Walter Steinlin, former President of Innosuisse demystified the Swiss Innovation System, highlighting the different stakeholders and support organisations. On Tuesday the expeditions continued with visits to “Nomoko” a Zurich based start-up, building a digital mirror world of cities. After a discussion with the founders and operations team the EMBA went on to visit award winning Start-Up “Wingtra”, where the EMBA participants had a chance to discuss with Terence Thiel and see the “vertical take-off fixed wing drone” in action. Stefano Gasparini, participant in the EMBA UZH and CEO of Certinergia, a business now fully owned by Engie Group, said “It is fascinating to learn and experience innovation in Switzerland and I get valuable insights for my business”. Dr Gabriele Schwarz said “Every day of our Learning Expedition has a distinct topic relevant to Swiss innovation and the business cases and company visits relate to each other. This way we are exploring the exciting, dynamic space between science and industry.”
The Learning Expedition Switzerland is part of the EMBA UZH`s study mission through the global innovation hotspots Tel-Aviv, Shanghai, Silicon Valley and Boston. Later in the week the focus will be on finding out how established companies digitally transform their business and will be hosted by “V-Zug” and an exploration of “Crypto Valley” and blockchain based business models. Then the EMBA will visit the Innovation and Entrepreneurship Lab and the Biosafety Lab at ETH and discuss with start-ups and founders of spin out companies.
Learn more about the Executive MBA at UZH here.