Rolex Learning Center

Written by Matthew Martin

The Innovation Forum made its debut in EPFL, Lausanne at the Rolex Learning Centre on March 12 welcoming more than 300 participants. The forum focused on the evolution of technology and how innovation plays a powerful part in a country’s growth and development. The forum welcomed a handful of startups with stands where the participants could meet, interact and look at their innovative products. With 4 panel discussions, 2 workshops and 15+ exhibitors, IFL15 created a very dynamic atmosphere.

The forum’s idea is to promote innovation and bridging the gap between academia, industry and government. From the various innovative ideas, one truly stuck out by getting everyone’s attention was a tortilla machine called Flatev developed in Zurich by Mr. Carlos Ruiz. The concept is simple consisting a capsule containing flour that provides warm tortillas.

Among the various speakers, some really stood out speaking on their failures with a start up. Their message to young entrepreneurs was to not give up and make smart decisions. Venturelab, a Swiss company that helps startup with their projects and ideas shared experiences of working with startups. They open a platform for young entrepreneurs to pitch their ideas, which are then picked up by investors.

The myths of returns on investments and how start-ups are financed by venture capitalists were laid out on the table. Yann Cotte, a Physics graduate and a PhD holder presented his Holographic Microscopy which is capable of looking into living cells.

The launch of this event was filled with investors; grant makers, researchers and entrepreneurs. The Innovation Forum at the Rolex Learning Centre at EPFL was a great event with intellectuals from different backgrounds. Horyou Geneva enjoyed a memorable time with the organizing team and the participants at the forum. We look forward to attending the next innovation forum.

For all Social Innovation-goers, we will welcome you at the next event of the year in Geneva with our Social Innovation and Global Ethics Forum, SIGEF 2015, from October 23-25. Contact us for more information at

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