Interview with President Sergio Mottola
Mottola: "Our Republic will soon be a worldwide hub for digital innovation".
Sergio Mottola, a life in the economy of digital transformation, between London, one of the major world hubs, Italy and now San Marino. It is on him that the Republic has bet the bet to develop the digital economy in the shadow of the Titan. It comes from decades of experience with large companies in England and still today does not give up the "globetrotter" to pursue knowledge and innovation in the digital world. His, more than a job, is a "mission" of life.
For Mottola, we need good people, state-of-the-art infrastructure, a careful and close state, new ideas and capital. In short, a mix of elements that together make a favorable habitat. We talked about this in this interview, to get to know his ideas in a direct way.
What is San Marino Innovation?
He is a state enabler. A subject that brings together knowledge, skills, technology, experiences, networks and that helps to grow individuals put on the network and promotes the development of these networks in connection with other networks around the world.
In other words, an open system?
This is why we talk about Open Innovation where the protagonists are the local networks 'innovation ecosystems' and its interpreters such as consumers, businesses, research and training centers, financial operators and the public sector. We are those who want to aggregate and make sure that innovation is done at our table, trying to make all the actors in the Republic contribute.
A state enabler? It sounds strange that there is a public hand in the processes of innovation.
Sure. This is true all over the world, starting with the most advanced capitalist economies. This is what happens in Silicon Valley. The public stimulates with laws, promotes the culture of innovation, supports a long-term vision, creates infrastructures. Wherever there is a public system that directs the process. In San Marino I found the same culture. There is the will of the Government to open and accelerate on the innovation front.
The proximity and the regulatory capacity. They are two basic elements. Where states are pachidermal and slow, the initial drive is lost. A small and reactive state has the potential to attract the actors of innovation, therefore also the capitals.
In which sectors of the digital economy will you bet?
Especially in areas such as fintech, medtech, artificial intelligence and robotics.
San Marino is palatable? Do you think that companies will come and there will be new initiatives?
I am sure. Here are ideal conditions for development. The proximity of the institutions and the small-scale dimensions will allow us to have certain times and streamlined procedures. The entrepreneur has a single interlocutor at the highest level and certain times and clear laws. In short San Marino Innovation "will guarantee the entrepreneurial validity of the initiative towards the institutions and will in turn guarantee certainty of time for the entrepreneurs".
If you were to look at benchmarking in the world what do you think?
I think of experiences like Estonia, which has become a case history in the digitization of the public administration that is a reference for the whole world, to Georgia where there is a process in progress. In short, small republics that until recently did not have experience in digital, but now they stand out.
If you were to launch an appeal to a group of entrepreneurs?
I rarely found an environment with all the conditions present and a strong will of the Executive to make innovation. We have everything to tell you that in San Marino we are writing a piece of digital history, we are looking for partners for our system. And we are Open innovation. We are waiting for you.
By Gianni Moreschi