José Manuel Leceta, new CEO of Innova IRV

José Manuel Leceta, PhD in Telecommunications Engineering and expert in innovation and technology, with extensive experience in these fields, joins the Ricardo Valle Innovation Institute Foundation (Innova IRV) as the new CEO

José Manuel Leceta has worked for the last few years as CIO at the Port Authority of Alicante, in charge of digital transformation and sustainability. He was also the founder and chairman of the advisory board of the Think&Do Tank ‘Insight Foresight Institute’ (IFI).

Previously, he has also been Director General of, between 2016 and 2018; Director of the European Institute of Innovation and Technology (EIT), between 2011 and 2015; and International Director of the Centre for the Development of Industrial Technology (CDTI), between 2004 and 2010.

He holds a PhD in Telecommunications Engineering, with studies in Business Administration and Spatial Studies (ISU). He also holds diplomas in ICT Strategic Management, Telecommunications Economics, International Studies, Quantitative Research Methodologies and Economics and Innovation Management.

Among its achievements, it is worth highlighting the maturation of the EIT’s first Knowledge and Innovation Communities (KICs) with the participation of top-level universities, researchers and companies, which resulted in an increase of the EIT budget by up to €2.7 billion in the period 2014-2020.

As International Director of CDTI, he successfully led the 50% increase in Spanish participation and leadership in the European Union’s R&D Framework Programmes and established bilateral cooperation programmes with China, Japan, India, South Korea, South Africa and Canada.

In addition, José Manuel Leceta is the author of the book ‘Fractal Innovation,’ and of numerous research articles and publications related to innovation and entrepreneurship policies and strategies.

Regarding his incorporation to the Foundation, Ezequiel Navarro, president of Innova IRV, emphasised that his experience in European institutions, such as the Space Agency or the EIT in Budapest, will allow Innova IRV’s projects to be approached in a ‘much more solid way and with a clear orientation towards the innovation policies of the European Union.’

‘One of the approaches that have been in the spirit of Innova IRV from the beginning is the desire to link our projects with the strategic lines that are being developed in Europe in terms of industrialisation and digitalisation, and we are working on this,’ said Navarro.


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