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Commencement of the University Technology School the Focus-Abengoa Foundation has organized with the collaboration of the Menéndez Pelayo International University (UIMP)

March 7, 2005

Seville, March 4, 2005. - From March 7 to 11, the Focus-Abengoa Foundation, in collaboration with the Menendez Pelayo International University, will host the first seminar of the University Technology School entitled Technology, globalization and productivity. This School will turn the Hospital de los Venerables into an encounter and thought forum, developed by international level professors and researchers who will discuss topics of maximum current-day interest over the next three years.

The inauguration ceremony, to be held on Monday 7 at 18:30 hours in the Foundation’s Hospital de los Venerables headquarters, will be chaired by Francisco Vallejo Serrano, the Regional Government of Andalusia’s Councilor for Innovation, Science and Commerce, Javier Sanz Feito, the UIMP’s Vice-rector for Research and Innovation, and Javier Benjumea Llorente, Chairman of the Focus-Abengoa Foundation.

The Technology School, managed by professor Juergen Donges, Director of the Economic Policy Institute of Cologne, and professors Antonio Miguel Bernal and Jose Maria O’Kean, from the Universities of Seville and Pablo de Olavide, respectively, will explain to the attendees the importance of this new educational activity.

This School’s first seminar comprises conferences, work sessions and debate panels, entry to the latter being free until full capacity is reached, and that will commence in the afternoon of Friday 7 and run through to the morning of Friday, March 11.

The objective is to advance in the understanding of the role played by technology and innovation processes in the knowledge society and their impact, on the increase in productivity and on the level of competitiveness of companies and countries, in the global market environment. The manner in which the large international economies (mainly the US and EU) face up to these challenges will set the analysis framework for this seminar.

The international conference speakers will include Prof. Dr. Bart van Ark, lecturer at the Dutch University of Groningen and director of the Groningen Growth and Development Center, as well as Prof. Dr. Henning Klodt, Director of the World Economy Institute of Kiel (Germany).

The speakers from the home front will include acknowledged experts in information technologies and their economic implications, such as Manuel Sanchez Ortega, Chairman of Telvent, the global IT company and first Spanish company to be listed on the NASDAQ, or Eduardo Punset, a recognized expert at international level on analyzing the information society. Other participants in the School will include authorities on the state of the global economy and the competitiveness challenge it poses, such as Prof. Dr. Emilio Ontiveros, a Business Economy Lecturer at the Autonomous University of Madrid and Managing Director of Asesores Financieros Internacionales; Jose Luis Galan Gonzalez, a Lecturer at the Pablo de Olavide University, or Gustavo Matias Clavero, from the Autonomous University of Madrid.

From a technological policy point of view, national policy activities will be dealt with, and will be expounded on by the General Manager for Industry of the Ministry of Industry, Tourism and Commerce, Joan Trullen, and the activities of a regional nature will be dealt with by Isabel de Haro Aramberri, General Secretary for Industrial and Energy Development of the Department of Innovation, Science and Business of the Regional Government of Andalusia.

Furthermore, the impact of technology on the business sector will be analyzed by Jaime Dominguez Abascal, Lecturer at the Superior School of Engineers of Seville, and Jose Mario Alvarez de Novales, Strategy Professor from the Enterprise Institute and Assistant general Manager of its Business School.

The Technology School is the fruit of a collaboration agreement between both institutions which has materialized in the form of two Schools, each with a three-year program, one dedicated to Baroque, held last November, and the other to Technology. The courses are given in Focus-Abengoa’s Hospital de los Venerables headquarters and are included in the UIMP’s academic program in Seville. As regards their educational content, the Schools can be validated as free-configuration credits in the Universities of Seville, Pablo de Olavide, and in all others with which the UIMP has validation agreements signed.

The Focus-Abengoa Foundation was established in 1982 as a consequence of the cultural activity initiated in 1972 by Abengoa with the publishing of the works "Sevillian Topics" and "Iconography of Seville". During this same period a collection of documents, books and prints on Seville, or by Sevillian authors, was being put together. This initial cultural activity brought Abengoa's senior management to see the importance of the company being seen outside its essential technological functions through an activity that would be of benefit to society as a whole, which led to the founding of the Fundación Fondo de Cultura de Sevilla.

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