Could you briefly describe your core expertise and field of activity within the Enterprise Europe Network? What are key services you offer to your clients?
At Idea Agency we began to offer intellectual property services in 2002, initially at a national level and limited to registration and filing processes. Since then, we have expanded our consulting services. Currently, we help companies to build an international strategy to protect innovation. I am lucky to be part of a team that covers all of Andalusia, a very large region. Working together helps us to improve.
In addition, since mid-April 2021 I am part of the coordination team of the EEN intellectual property thematic group, together with Costas Troulos (Greece), as Chair, and Cristina Natal (Spain). Hopefully, it is the beginning of a fruitful journey for all.
What does it mean to you to be a European IP Helpdesk Ambassador? And what do you like most about it?
Being part of the European IP Helpdesk Ambassador scheme is very fortunate. On the one hand, it allows us to have access to information and training on the latest novelties from European organizations that work in this sector (EPO, EUIPO, European Commission…). On the other hand, being in contact with other colleagues who carry out similar tasks in other countries facilitates the exchange of experiences, and being able to consult them with specific local questions is always a great help.
How would you describe the internal interaction and cooperation with your Enterprise Europe Network colleagues?
This is the part that I enjoy the most, not only in the formal presentations that are included in the agenda of each Ambassador training, but a simple, informal chat with any of my colleagues allows me to learn and share practical experiences. Although in principle, we each come from very different backgrounds, we face similar problems and situations with our beloved SMEs.
In relation to the rest of the Spanish colleagues of the EEN, I believe that little by little they are increasingly taking into account how important the proper use of intellectual property is for SMEs, knowing that they can count on the support of the European IP Helpdesk whenever they need it.
In your opinion, what are current “hot” topics and questions related to Intellectual Property (IP) in your region/country?
There are many expectations around the new framework Horizon Europe and we are all keen to see how it will evolve, and the IP-related guidelines that may arise in relation to the funded projects. The more we help that the information reaches the final beneficiaries, the more effective the response will be. The situation resulting from the pandemic makes it not easy for many companies to plan for the medium term, but it is important to do so.
What are major challenges SMEs face with regard to IP? And what kind of support is needed, you think?
For me, it has always been important that researchers and SMEs understand that the registration of an industrial property title is not the end itself, but can help the company to obtain an adequate return on the innovations it generates.
Putting a value on intellectual property and knowing that it is a source of resources when used properly is the hardest thing for many SMEs to understand, beyond the administrative procedures and the payment of fees. We have been working on it for many years, but there is still a long way to go.