Isidro Laso Ballesteros

Head of Startup Europe Sector, DG-Connect at European Commission

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Head of Startup Europe Sector, European Commission Directorate General for Communications Networks, Content and Technology (EC DG-Connect)

Continuing Policy Fellow, Centre for Science and Policy

Isidro had his first taste of entrepreneurship at university, where he created a junior enterprise. After graduating as an Engineer from the Universidad Politecnica de Madrid, he set up his on software business in the area of engineering working with sensors, actuators, Geographic Information Systems and design tools before becoming a strategic consultant to high-level executives (CEOs of large corporations), mainly in the telco and media sector.

He then moved to the ICT sector where he worked on research projects related to Workflow Management Systems and Internet Collaboration Systems. This gave him the opportunity to create a new department within his company offering change management projects to customers, to complement traditional ICT projects. Subsequently he spent five months working for one of the Ministries in Spain before being seconded to the European Commission as a National Expert.

Since becoming a Commission official he has managed research projects and drafted research strategy objectives. From 2010 onwards he has been focused on creating a new endeavour within the EU institutions related to tech start-ups; the first output of this latest work is the Startup Europe initiative. Isidro has written several books and papers, some of which have been translated into other languages, including Japanese.

Since 2015 Isidro he has been nominated thought leader at United Nations ITU, and is member of several advisory boards to international networks of startups (EU - India, EU - Silicon Valley). He combines his professional activities with teaching activities as visiting lecturer to CEPADE (business school of the Universidad Politecnica de Madrid).

Isidro’s objectives as a CSaP Continuing Fellow are to share views on policy measures to strengthen the environment for startups in Europe; to learn new ways of policy making better adapted to an era of extremely rapid change that characterise the tech startups; to access international knowledge and best practices related to policies for tech startups; and to share knowledge on the characteristics of this new economy around fast moving startups.

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