EL PASO, Texas ― The Hunt Institute for Global Competitiveness recently brought together officials from the U.S. Department of State, the National Entrepreneurship Institute (INADEM), and the Mexican Ministry of Foreign Affairs for the sixth annual meeting of the Mexico-United States Entrepreneurship and Innovation Council (MUSEIC).
The group discussed how the United States and Mexico can strengthen North American competitiveness and productivity by working together to foster greater binational entrepreneurship and innovation.
MUSEIC was established in 2013 to strengthen linkages between the U.S. and Mexico. The Council is made up of representatives from government, academia, NGOs, the private sector, business accelerators, and venture capital funds on both sides of the border. The Hunt Institute was appointed MUSEIC’s Technical Secretariat in 2017.
“In many ways, the mission and focus of MUSEIC aligns perfectly with the mission of The Hunt Institute – to foster greater understanding and collaboration between the United States and Mexico by mapping out and aligning the assets each country has to offer,” said Patrick Schaefer, executive director of The Hunt Institute. “We have a unique ability to acquire data from Mexico and synergize that data with that in the U.S. to pinpoint opportunities for economic growth and entrepreneurship. We are honored to work with the Council, and believe that the trust we have already built with institutions on both sides of the border, will be an asset to this partnership moving forward.”
The meeting focused on the future of MUSEIC and on ensuring that the Council continues to provide tangible, measurable benefits to Mexican and U.S. entrepreneurs. MUSEIC representatives discussed ways to promote women’s entrepreneurship and encourage more women-owned small to mid-sized enterprises to conduct cross-border business. The Council also acknowledged the importance of attracting more private sector resources to MUSEIC, and continuing to establish U.S.-Mexico technology links through Innovation Bridges with U.S. cities.
“The U.S. State Department is working to find creative and effective ways to help strengthen the start-up ecosystems in the United States and Mexico, create new business opportunities for entrepreneurs in both countries, and empower our small and medium-sized businesses to compete successfully in the global marketplace,” said David Lippeatt Counselor for Economic Affairs, U.S. Embassy in Mexico.
The meeting included: Raffi Balian, Coordinator, Office of Commercial and Business Affairs, U.S. Department of State; Thomas Bowles, Associate Director of Business Development, Fundación México-Estados Unidos para Ciencia (FUMEC); Guadalupe Castañeda, Partner, EY México; Guillermo Fernández de la Garza, CEO, FUMEC; Mauricio Ibarra, General Director for North America, Foreign Affairs Ministry; David Lippeatt, Economic Counselor, U.S. Embassy; Camila Lecaros, Managing Director, MassChallenge; Robert McKinley, Associate Vice President for Economic Development, Institute of Economic Development, The University of Texas at San Antonio; Itzel Villa, Director of General Entreprenuership and Financing Program, INADEM.
“The National Entrepreneurship Institute (INADEM) has always believed and worked very hard for MUSEIC,” said Itzel Villa Salinas, general director of the Entrepreneurship Programs and Financing at INADEM. “One of our goals was that MUSEIC could become independent through a Technical Secretariat, now that the Hunt Institute for Global Competitiveness is leading MUSEIC we are sure that they will be able to establish a more efficient operational structure and clear process that will allow greater operation efficiency and coordination among stakeholders, including the establishment of a yearly crosscutting priority. We truly believe that MUSEIC is a project that demonstrate that our countries have willingness to strengthen ties to promote binational growth and development.”
As Technical Secretariat, The Hunt Institute is responsible for execution and operationalization of MUSEIC’s strategic plan and priority initiatives, supplying information and communicating to all Council Members regarding MUSEIC, and providing data and answering requests of MUSEIC representatives. At the meeting, The Hunt Institute presented their vision for MUSEIC as well as the recently created platform which possesses an architecture that seeks to respond to many of the articulated needs regarding the optimal functioning of MUSEIC. The platform has the ability to host a deep and broad database of assets and information essential to the entrepreneurial ecosystem across the United States and Mexico.