2012 French American Innovation Day: A Great Success
November 29th and 30th – More than 100 people attended the 2012 French American Innovation Day, a two-day conference at the MIT-Bartos Theater, which was organized by the Office of Science and Technology of the Embassy of France in association with Veolia Water Solutions and Technologies.
This year’s event, “A Unique Bilateral Seminar with Veolia Water on Membrane Technologies,” gathered corporate executives and scientists from both sides of the Atlantic who share an interest in membrane technologies and water management. Two days of presentations and workshops provided a unique opportunity for international cooperation on a topic that represents one of the most crucial challenges of the 21st century: optimum management of global water resources. With this important objective in mind, FAID attracted the interest of several sponsors, including firms such as Corning, Millipore et Saint-Gobain.
Fabien Fieschi, Consul General of France in Boston, began the conference on November 29th with a welcome address in which he read a message from Laurent Fabius, the French Minister of Foreign Affairs, who recognized the important role of FAID in building transatlantic partnerships and encouraging international teamwork amongst members of the global scientific community. Consul General Fieschi then introduced Hervé Suty, Senior Vice President for Research and Innovation at Veolia Environnement, the corporate partner of the event. The objectives of Veolia Water perfectly correspond with the framework of FAID, which aims to catalyze joint cooperative projects between experts in both academia and industry.
The first day of presentations was divided into three sessions, the first focusing on Ceramic Membranes and New Materials, Session II centering on New Membrane Technologies, and Session III featuring lectures on Intelligent Membranes and Sensors. In between the sessions, participants enjoyed the chance to speak to fellow scientists and corporate executives from both countries, underlining the principal mission of the conference of encouraging future transatlantic partnerships.
On Friday, November 30th, the conference continued with three workshops following the themes of the previous day’s sessions. These smaller workshops, led by the presenters of each topic, encouraged all participants to concentrate on their specific area of interest, allowing for more focused collaboration.
This year’s FAID was successful in its mission to provide business opportunities for small firms and large firms alike, leading to ten potential cooperative projects and collaborative activities between experts in France and the United States, which in turn generate interest for both stakeholders and Veolia Water.