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Seminar on entrepreneurship and innovation in digital communication at the UPF

[20/05/11]

Barcelona, 13 May 2011.- Yesterday, Thursday 12 May, at the Communication Campus of Pompeu Fabra University a seminar took place entitled Digital Communication: Projects in Entrepreneurship and Innovation. Josep Maria Casasús, Dean of the Communication Faculty of the UPF, and Carme Martinell, Managing Director of IDEC-UPF, opened the meeting before a packed auditorium filled with communication professionals and students. Joan Francesc Cánovas, lecturer in the Communication Faculty of the UPF, presided over the welcome. As could not be otherwise, the meeting could be followed through streaming and on Twitter #comdig.

Within the framework of this seminar, the new Postgraduate Programme in Strategic Digital Communication was presented which, organised by IDEC-UPF, will commence in October.

The first round table focused on the opportunities arising from digital communication and included the participation of Genís Roca, director of Roca Salvatella; Janquim, journalist at 3cat24 and Esther Grávalos, head of communication at Telefónica in Catalonia. Cristina Ribas, consultant and lecturer in journalism at the UPF, acted as moderator. The key message in this first debate can be summarised in one sentence: The new digital context offers opportunities for those communication professionals prepared to innovate and take risks.

For Genís Roca, the future of large-scale media companies depends on accepting that the news is no longer a public service but a product. The media must accept that they are no longer the only ones generating quality content. To survive this change of paradigm, the media must reinforce their role of “editor” so as to accept quality news generated by others.

The journalist Joan Carreras, known in digital circles as Janquim, states that if people know how to use tools to create a different digital identity and work with this, opportunities exist. Finally, Esther Grávalos emphasised that the classic attributes of the journalist were still relevant and necessary in the current digital environment: capacity to summarise, capacity to analyse and verification.

Moderated by Mauro Fuentes, director of Social Media at Tinkle, the second round table was devoted to 360º Business: digital entrepreneurship in the 2.0 era. Martí Manent, CEO of derecho.com, and Joan Roca, general manager of Lastminute.com, explained their entrepreneurship experiences in the 2.0 environment. Ferran Güell, director of corporate marketing at Privalia, insisted on the i mportance of personalising the various platforms on which companies are present, and gave as an example the exclusive promotions offered to their followers on Facebook.

The final round table of the seminar was devoted to Innovating Experiences in Corporate Communication, and included the participation of Donald de Witte, representing CISCO Systems, Silvia Majó, from the press office of the Barcelona Chamber of Commerce, and Carlos Alonso, from Transports Metropolitans de Barcelona. Through their experiences, the speakers exemplified with emblematic projects the optimising of social media for the communication of organisations.

Mr Alonso explained the launch of the new TMB web, which is being accompanied by a heavy use of social media. In addition, he described the implementing of a system offering information on the frequency of the passing of buses at bus shelters through QR codes. This same information can also be obtained through an iPhone and Android application.

CISCO take advantage of social media in order to share knowledge with their employees through wikis, as well for handling communication. This innovation constitutes an even greater challenge if possible, within an organisation with 70,000 employees spread around the world.

Another interesting example is the case of the Barcelona Chamber of Commerce press office, which started a process of change incorporating its own resources of the new digital environment. One example is the use of Flickr for uploading photos for journalists, thus avoiding sending images by email. They also label all news stories, thus offering journalists all related stories at the end of each article.

The day was a complete success, both due to the number of those attending and to the level of speakers participating. Initiatives such as these consolidate even further the leading role of IDEC and the UPF in training within the field of communication.

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