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Richard Florida

Tuesday 21 February 2017

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Innovation Grand Prizes: betting on the future

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par Elsa Sidawy | 12.12.11

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To reward the winners of the tenth Paris City Council Innovation Grand Prizes, the jury met one evening in the Palais Brongniart auditorium in Paris. On December 1st, five start-ups were thus in the spotlight of the innovation ecosystem.

Olivier Lecomte, President of the Paris Region Lab and animator of that prizegiving evening, had made a promise to himself: the word “crisis” would be banned on the eve of the festive season, in spite of the more than gloomy financial situation. Yet Jean-Louis Missika, deputy mayor of Paris in charge of innovation, finally said the word when denouncing France’s lack of audacity when it comes to invest in innovation and research. “The innovation and research budgets should be maintained as the future of our country and of global cities is at stake here,” the elected representative declared. His speech was tinged with politics, at the dawn of a major election in France: “if the countries that are facing these issues want to survive, they must invest in their future,” he continued, adding that France was obviously lagging behind, if only in terms of patent registration. “We must hurry up and make significant financial efforts, in the order of 80 to 100 billion Euros,” he concluded at the end of an alarmist but rousing speech.

Photos credits: Olivier Ezratty

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