End of Year Live Event | Learn and Share: S.P.A.C.E. for Innovation at the UN 

The world is being fundamentally transformed by ongoing socio-economic and climactic transitions, emerging technologies, and resultant new ways of thinking and working – with the COVID-19 pandemic only accelerating the need for ever increased innovation. There are focused, dedicated individuals, teams, and units from across the UN System who are mainstreaming the criticality of innovation in their every-day – investing the time and developing the perspectives to allow themselves to do things differently, and to do different things. Now, more than ever, the sharing of knowledge, good practice, and lessons learned on how such transitions are being mainstreamed across United Nations agencies is vital. 

The UNSSC is proud to be co-creating this End-of-Year Event “ Learn and Share: S.P.A.C.E. for Innovation at the UN”, with the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD); the International Trade Centre (ITC); the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA); the World Food Forum (WFF); and the World Tourism Organisation (UNWTO);- whose selected Innovation Champions will share their experiences from throughout 2022.  

To support knowledge sharing, these Innovation Champions will share their experiences in alignment with the UN Innovation Toolkit, and how its different tools and elements can support the UN System to engage in the disruptive journey of innovation.  

  • The UN Innovation Toolkit was generated around the S.P.A.C.E. framework: five key pillars identified as critical for sustained, scoped and systematic innovation in the UN context: Strategy; Partnerships; Architecture, Culture and Evaluation.  
  • In this way, each Innovation Champion will focus on one of the pillars of the S.PA.C.E. framework,to share how it has contributed to or influenced their area of innovation. 
  • Each pillar, that is to say, Strategy, Partnerships, Architecture, Culture, and Evaluation, will feature 3-5 Innovation Champions from each of the participating UN entities, that will share their experiences, as well as engage in conversations and discussions around the same pillar with participants.  

The event will take place on Wednesday 7 December 2022, 15:00-16:30 pm CET, on Zoom. This 1.5-hour live event is designed to cultivate an interactive, learning community where Innovation Champions from the above-mentioned UN entities are connected to participants, creating a space for dialogue, and sharing experiences around the  S.P.A.C.E Framework of the UN Innovation Toolkit.  

With opening remarks from the Nigina Muntean, Head of the Innovation Unit at UNFPA, Gladys H. Morales, Senior Innovation Adviser at the Change, Delivery and Innovation Unit at IFAD, Adriana de Oro Osorio, Innovation Coordinator at ITC, Natalia Bayona, Director of Innovation, Education and Investments at UNWTO, and Janina Peter, Head of Innovation at the World Food Forum, along with a brief introduction on how they conduct their internal Innovation Challenges to foster innovation and where their Innovation Champions come from, this event aspires to enhance the collaborative discourse around innovation, by recognizing the distinct contextualisation of innovation within different realities, by Innovation Champions in versatile fields, across the S.P.A.C.E framework. 

Opening Conversation Speakers
UNFPA Innovation Champions
  • Sydney Hushie, Regional Innovation Specialist at UNFPA
  • Gilles Virgili, Strategic Partnerships Specialist at UNFPA
  • Marvin Hoff, Chief, Career Development and Talent Mobility Branch at UNFPA
  • Jaime Aguirre, Innovation Coordinator at UNFPA
  • Tharanga Godallage, Results-based Management Adviser at UNFPA
IFAD Innovation Champions

Click here to access the full list of IFAD Innovation Champions

ITC Innovation Champions
  • Aicha Chapi, Programme Assistant
  • Saskia Marx, Business Development Officer
  • Raimund Moser, Programme Officer at ITC
  • Tianyu Mao, Senior Programme Manager
  • Biruh MekonnenManager for Information and Development at ITC 
WFF Innovation Champion
  • Victor Mugo, Head of Global Partnerships at World Food Forum

UNWTO Champions
Watch the event recording