Antonio Huertas: “The awards connect innovation with the social needs of those most in need”

  • Medicsen Smartpatch (Spain), the world’s first needle-free drug delivery device, Health Improvement and Digital Technology Award.
  • LABORA (Brazil), an employment platform that favors generational inclusion, Economics of Aging Award.
  • Wheel the World (Chile), a technological solution for people with disabilities to book accessible trips, Accident Prevention and Safe and Sustainable Mobility Award.
  • Fleximedical (Brazil), special mention from the judging panel for providing medical and dental care in areas with scarce resources.
  • More than 300 initiatives from 10 countries took part in the fourth edition of the Fundación MAPFRE Social Innovation Awards, promoted by IE University.
  • Winners will each receive a prize of 30,000 euros from Fundación MAPFRE and free consultancy from the EY Foundation.

Madrid, May 12, 2021. Medicsen Smartpatch (Spain), the world’s first needle-free drug delivery device, positioning itself as a painless alternative for managing chronic illnesses; LABORA (Brazil), an employment platform designed to find effective solutions to the recruitment, training and integration challenges of people over 50; and a technological solution, Wheel the World (Chile), enabling people with disabilities to find and book fully accessible travel experiences.

These are the three winners of the fourth edition of the Fundación MAPFRE Social Innovation Awards, promoted by IE University — an academic partner of the awards, whose objective is to improve people’s lives. Each of the winners will receive a prize of 30,000 euros to help develop their projects, as well as free consultancy from the EY Foundation, a new collaborator for this edition, to help them grow and be more efficient.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Real solutions to real problems

“These awards are for inclusion, protection, integration and preparation for the future,” said Antonio Huertas, President of Fundación MAPFRE, who took part in granting the awards, which “connect innovation with social needs, especially among those most in need.” The Fundación MAPFRE President also pointed out that “by encouraging these winners and giving them visibility, we are helping to reduce the timescale for these projects to become products and, by extension, solutions.” He also stressed that Fundación MAPFRE would continue to promote these awards, with a new fifth edition beginning in October this year.

“Projects that apply innovation and technology to promote social and environmental goals are more important than ever. They give us hope to overcome this crisis and do it more inclusively and fairly”, said Concepción Galdón, director of IE Center for Social Innovation and Sustainability at IE University.

313 participants from 10 countries

Designed as a contest across three geographical regions—Brazil, the rest of Latin America and Europe—the aim of the Fundación MAPFRE Social Innovation Awards is to contribute to improving mobility and road safety, to promote health and healthy habits and to drive actions that encourage healthy and active aging and improve the quality of life for people aged 55–75.

The nine finalists presented their proposals to a judging panel comprised of professionals from businesses and social enterprises. The panel selected the best projects and, this year, decided to give a special mention to Fleximedical (Brazil), a finalist project providing medical and dental healthcare to disadvantaged areas of the country via portable units.

313 projects were submitted for this year’s awards, some 28 percent more than the previous year, and these were developed by scientists, researchers, entrepreneurs and students from all over the world. Only 27 of them, those deemed most innovative and with the greatest social impact, reached the three regional semi-finals (held in March) and benefited from a mentoring and coaching program offered by IE University to help boost their visibility.