The Spanish that fills the world with sensors

Like the insect that the company name refers to, Libelium's sensors have been flying for 12 years to cities all over the world. This multinational Zaragoza present in 120 points of the world and that bill six million euros a year manufactures devices that store and transmit data of what they are asked: from the conditions of the habitat of the whales in Alaska, to the water level of the Largest meat company in Australia, going through the needs of a vineyard in Spain and the number and movements of visitors to a fair in the UK.

Alicia Asín is co-founder and has just received the second prize for innovative women that the European Commission is delivering for her work in the Smart cities field. "A few years ago I said that Spain was the Silicon Valley of the smart cities and I keep it. I think that the crisis created conditions that favoured innovation and now these companies are the ones that sound at the international level. And I think this has happened in Spain more than in other European countries, "he explains on the other side of the phone. Libelium exports 90% of its products abroad.

Contrary to the great headlines, the directive prefers to talk about what the so-called Internet of Things already brings (the connection of everyday objects with the network) in urban settlements. "We are going to see more and more how the rulers will be accountable through the data. Either they will serve to involve citizens in finding solutions or to justify decisions, such as traffic cuts for environmental reasons, "he says. The businesswoman quotes Barcelona and Malaga in Spain as two examples of cities that have put the batteries in new technologies and Singapore and Dubai as two global projects to follow the track. "I have seen how the involvement of city councils has increased over the last seven years. Now they do not take competitions to implement thousands of sensors to 20 euros each, it does not make sense that there is a sensor in each post, but begins to have a comprehensive planning, "he says.

Asín warns that we will not go out one day in the street to find us in a coup with the city of the future. "The innovation that is made in the cities is the most public in the world. A lab may be investigating the most revolutionary vaccine and maybe you don't know anything in 15 years, because they are not going to inform you of every step they give and every mistake they make, but in the cities anyone sees it, to start because you just have to cut a way p ARA install the sensors on the streetlights, "he says. The businesswoman points out that politicians have to learn how to manage expectations and not to announce the installation of a system in an initial phase.

The innovation that is made in the cities is the most public in the world. A lab may be investigating the most revolutionary vaccine and maybe you don't know anything in 15 years.

Security is the subject that most worries users when they think about sharing information in a cloud, to which Asín replies that most of the problems are derived from not following the protocols that already exist. "Something as dramatic as the WannaCry (a virus that caused global chaos on May 12, 2017) happens because we do not change the passwords that come by default on the devices," he stresses. In Asín's view, the responsibility for security must be shared between the manufacturer who must incorporate encryption elements, the system integrators who have to implement these protocols and the users, who must require the same Responsibility in the security that they require, for example, in the duration of a battery.

As a woman and a directive in the world of technology, Asín does not believe in positive discrimination, but he does feel the responsibility as an example for future generations and participates in a program to give lectures in schools and normalize the role of the heads. He says he gets enough messages from parents ' social networks that tell them to put their videos to their daughters to see where they can go. "In the team of engineers there is only one woman because we have no more resumes, but in the management team we are four women and three men. I have had two daughters and I understand what happens in a pregnancy and that does not compromise with the company, so I say: let's talk about teleworking, talk about managing maternal low in a reasonable way. "