Basque Country members

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Ainara Basurko

Managing director at BEAZ

Ainara Basurko holds a degree in Economic Law from the University of Deusto as well as a Master’s Degree in Business Administration and Management (MBA) from the University of Deusto.

She began her professional career in strategic consulting at LKS S. Coop. Then, she became Director of the Azaro Foundation and Director of the Agency for Regional Development Lea Artibai. Both entities are responsible of boosting the economic development of this region. In 2015, she assumed the General Management of Beaz, a public entity dependent on the Department of Economic and Territorial Development of the Provincial Council of Bizkaia, whose mission is to promote entrepreneurship and the competitiveness of the business fabric of the territory

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Gotzon Bernaola

Director of Public Innovation at Innobasque

Gotzon Bernaola Ariño (Graduated in Mathematical Sciences) is the Director of Public Innovation at Innobasque – the Basque Agency for Innovation, which tries to address and give a comprehensive and structured response to the challenges that faces the Basque society, in order to consolidate a leading position in the field of innovation between European regions.

He believes that public innovation and new governance models should be oriented towards the creation of spaces and environments for meeting those agents which are worried about change, incorporating into the innovation processes the different visions of the territory as catalysts of an environment that encourages innovation.

He is in favour of developing an innovation ecosystem where social processes that occur outside the business or economic context are an important axis of development, and he also believes that all the capabilities of our territory must be activated from innovation and that all people, independently of our age, gender or origin, can be agents of transformation overcoming situations of confrontation and isolation.

Among others:

  • He has been a member of the executive board of SIX-Social Innovation Exchange (until May 2018), a worldwide network of social innovators formed by innovation agencies and organizations from around the world.
  • In October 2012, he was awarded the 2012 SIP Prize for the Social Innovation Park in Singapore delivered by the Parliament of this country.
  • In February 2013, the region of the Basque Country and Innobasque were recognized as good practices in social innovation linked to the regional innovation strategy in the European Guide for Social Innovation, published in February 2013.

• In October 2013 Innobasque – the Basque Innovation Agency received the Asian Innovation Leadership Award as the best initiative to support the construction of public policies and as the best initiative to mobilise society and support public policies.

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Jorge García del Arco

Co-Founder and CEO of ImproveChange.org

Jorge García del Arco is co-founder and CEO of ImproveChange.org, focused on helping all types of organisations (private, public and third sector) to improve their Creation of Shared Value.

He promotes startups that seek to improve their positive social and environmental impact, for instance, Aquadat: a water intelligence platform for its efficient management in real time. It was the only European finalist in the MIT Water Innovation Prize 2017.

Explorer, Maker and Executive MBA from IE Business School, Jorge has over twenty years of management experience in the Telecommunications sector (Ericsson, IBV Corp, Euskaltel) and Business Process Outsourcing services (Xupera). He has co-organized forums such as TEDxBilbao and the Financial Congress Digital Meeting. He is the founding curator of the Hub of Global Shapers Bilbao, network of the World Economic Forum, which seeks young people that generate social impact in their communities, one of the # G100 of the Terris project (Territories and Social Innovation), a process of co-creation of a New Rurality.

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Josetxu González

Director of Innovation & Development at Social Network of Cooperatives of Caritas.

Josetxu is a person firmly committed to social transformation and to the economy to serve people.

Founding Partner in 1990 of The Social Network of Cooperatives and Non-profit Insertion Companies promoted by Cáritas, where he currently holds the position of Director of Innovation and Development.

In his career, he has led the formation of this group of more than 20 social cooperatives, insertion companies and foundations, creating more than 200 social jobs, with the aim of promoting the labour inclusion of people in risk of exclusion.

Its vital and professional mission is to generate and develop innovative projects with values, which create value and positive impact on society.

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Josean Rodriguez

Manager of Entrepreneur’s Forum at Adegi.

Josean Rodriguez is manager of Entrepreneur’s Forum at Adegi. This forum gather around 95 new local entrepreneurial projects, in a wide variety of business models and focus to different markets.

As a Forum, we believe that sharing experiences based on our successes and failures is a very valuable resource for learning. It’s key for us being generous when doing so allows us to:

1.- Create a space for interaction between entrepreneurs of different ages, sectors and stages of development of their projects. We form a stimulating entrepreneurial ecosystem thanks to the addition of their talents and values. We use workshop-type formats to cover the main topics of business management, collective and individual mentoring sessions… as well as other recreational ones.

2.-ADEGI provides us with: the knowledge accumulated over its 30 years of experience in the defence and promotion of business interests. It provides us with its company and key advisory resources, as well as the relational potential that generates opportunities thanks to sharing a platform/network formed by all the companies associated to ADEGI.

At the ADEGI Entrepreneurs’ Forum, we are committed to promoting synergies that have a real impact on the income statement. For this reason, much of our effort is focused on:

  • Promoting connections (through networking events, fun and relaxed meetings…) between the different companies that are part of the Forum with the aim of creating opportunities and creating business.

* We provide quick ways for teams to access their peers. We curate local meet-ups in our key hubs among our portfolio. We organise master classes by external experts.

• To foster and activate collaboration networks among entrepreneurs. These are important hubs of knowledge and experience that facilitate the creation of high-impact projects in the region.

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Cristina San Salvador del Valle

Responsible of Social Impact in BBK Foundation.

Cristina San Salvador del Valle is currently responsible for Social Impact at BBK. Her role has a double aim: contributing to ensure that the projects of BBK’s Social Work measure, manage and maximize the social impact generated and contributing to the construction of the impact ecosystem in Biscay (generating knowledge, launching pilots in the new continuum of financing: impact investment, Venture philanthropy …).

Previously Cristina worked at the University of Deusto where she made teaching in the financial area compatible with research and consulting in the field of social impact. Formerly she had worked at Deloitte, both in Bilbao and London, in auditing and financial consulting. Cristina has a degree in Business Administration, Specialisation in Finance from the University of Deusto and a Master in Audit and Management Development also from the University of Deusto.

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Javier Sanz

Director of Elkar-lan S. Coop.

Degree in Law from the University of Deusto and Graduate in Cooperativism (1984).

From 2003 to the present he is Director of Elkar-Lan S. Coop. the Society for the Promotion of Cooperative Enterprises as well as President of the Basque Cooperative Arbitration Service (SVAC in its initials in Spanish) of the Higher Council of Cooperatives of the Basque Country.

Javier previously has been Director of Social Economy for the Basque Government (1991).

President of the Federation of Cooperatives of Associated Work of the Basque Country (1993 – 2004).

Counsellor of the Permanent Commission of the Economic and Social Council of the Basque Country in Representation of the Cooperatives. (1995 – 2013).