Currently ITMO University promotes a principle of entrepreneurial approach to the urban infrastructure development. Its` students and researchers implement various development projects such as small innovation enterprises based on University facilities that aim to promote inventions in different fields. For example, St. Petersburg researchers succeeded in producing a new type of healthy food and an innovative quantum communication system. The University supports student entrepreneurial activities, makes new contacts with leading high-tech manufacturers and vendors as well as looks for new industrial partners.
The representatives of Electrolux came to ITMO University on February 17 to discuss further partnership with its` officials. Primarily the meeting was centered around the air quality control`s ways but the agenda included other topics. Thus the international experts took part in the presentation by ITMO University startupers and research teams, visited some labs, departments, FABLAB of ITMO University Technopark, and the Business Incubator as well. According to Lucia Chierchia, Open Innovations Director of Global Technology Center Electrolux, meetings with universities aim to look for technologies that can be applied for new product.
“In Electrolux we discover all the technologies and all the core competences that are required for our product. But what we are looking in universities or in general r&d centers is very specific - it's novelty, disruptive technological solutions we could use by implementing in our applications. What we see today here is a very good example: very specific solutions in the air treatment and air filtration. Usually we are trying to apply such innovative solution. Very specific solution we can apply on our market,” noted Ms. Chierchia.
As the expert noted, Electrolux develops not only household appliances, but also different extra technologies. Most research projects may serve as a basis for the collaboration.
"Before the meeting we were informed that ITMO University had a huge competence in air area, so the expectation was more about this. But I think that another interesting area of collaboration can be the Internet of Things and IT topics in general,” said the expert.
Ekaterina Egoshina, Head of Marketing Department of ITMO University, noted in the interview that collaboration with top manufacturing companies opens up the opportunities for St. Petersburg developers as well as serves as a base of technological transfer activities in Russia and abroad.
“Electrolux is more than a home appliance manufacturer. It develops various areas. By developing joint projects we can initiate industrial application of some research activities developed in our r&d centers connected with biotechnologies. Our partners are interested in making contacts with ITMO startups and research teams. We also want to partner with Electrolux to promote our facilities to the international arena. Having opened two rep offices in Brussels and Arezzo ITMO University continues to extend its` horizons,” said Ekaterina Egoshina.