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Press Release

Copenhaguen Institute of Interaction Design Chooses Costa Rica as First Center Outside Europe

DECEMBER 3rd 2019

•Courses will begin in February 2020, focused on strategic areas within the fourth industrial revolution.
•CIID becomes part of Costa Rica’s global innovation life-centered hub. 

San José, December 3rd, 2019. The Copenhagen Institute of Interaction Design (CIID), recognized by Business Insider as one of the top leading design and innovation schools globally, has chosen Costa Rica for its first permanent expansion outside Europe.

CIID will offer courses and programs, such as its renowned Interaction Design Program (IDP), which will be launched in February 2020. Its presence strengthens Costa Rica’s stance as an innovation hub in Latin America and as a world leader in environmental policies. Two successful editions of the CIID Summer School held in Costa Rica in 2018 and 2019 served as a springboard for the institute to implement a large-scale operation in the country.

The Interaction Design Program lasts 12 months and has been taught since 2007 in Copenhagen. Since then, it has promoted leading design, technology and innovation professionals’ careers. This will take shape as well in Costa Rica and will be taught during most of the year in its new headquarters, located in a historic building in Barrio Escalante, which will have a dedicated space for workshops and community events, as well as a state-of-the-art digital manufacturing laboratory.

"We are excited to bring our Interaction Design Program and our valuable global network to Costa Rica, a country with enormous talent and interesting challenges to work. CIID’s vision in Costa Rica is to create a living laboratory of sustainable solutions and opportunities to practice life-centered design and innovation, aligned with the UN Sustainable Development Goals,” says Simona Maschi, CEO and cofounder of CIID.

Vanessa Gibson, Head of Investment Climate of the Costa Rican Investment Promotion Agency (CINDE), said: “CIID’s establishment in Costa Rica is the result of two years of coordinated work between several organizations in the country, interested in promoting and contributing to develop local capacities of innovation. CIID gives a vote of confidence by officially opening this campus, which benefits Costa Ricans and, of course, the region.”

CIID’s presence in Costa Rica aligns with the country's key priorities and its growing reputation on the world stage. Last October, the Costa Rican Ministry of Technology announced an action plan to promote the development of new technology-based companies and strengthen the capacities of national incubators. And in 2020, the Interaction Design Association, a global network of more than 100,000 members, will hold the Latin American conference in San José, highlighting the country even more as a design and innovation leader.

"We are very happy to be founding partners of CIID’s establishment in Costa Rica. This project represents a milestone in our scholarship programs and strengthens our support for generating Costa Rican human talent, especially, developing skills and abilities and innovative in harmony with the environment, an aspect that is essential for competitiveness in the era of the fourth industrial revolution," said David Gutierrez, Chairman of the Board of Directors of the CRUSA Foundation.

"A society should have the ability to imagine futures that do not yet exist. CIID’s presence in Costa Rica is a great opportunity for mental change," said Luis Javier Castro, president of Mesoamerica and a key partner for CIID's expansion in the region.

CIID’s establishment is possible thanks to CRUSA Foundation and Mr. Luis Javier Castro. It was also supported by CINDE and the Entrepreneurship Alliance for Development (AED), a group of over 140 companies that promote sustainable business development in Costa Rica.

Olga Sauma, Executive Director of AED, said: “We are very excited to be part of this alliance. CIID’s arrival represents a huge opportunity to boost the sustainability of Costa Rica’s business sector. Its focus on people and life seeks to inspire a change in the way we approach and seek solutions to important challenges.”

CIID’s focuses its methodology on an interdisciplinary approach to create products, services and systems that focus on the human being and the use of digital technology as a tool. With an emphasis on the prototyping process and design thinking as a catalyst for innovation, CIID has become not only a leading educational institute but also a world-renowned platform for innovation strategy and incubation.

The CRUSA-CIID alliance aims to boost education in strategic areas within the fourth industrial revolution: design, innovation, technology and fields in the "orange" or creative economy, which are widely considered the works of the future. Other aspects of this alliance include the financing of industry projects with local organizations, further positioning Costa Rica as a center for sustainable solutions that generate a positive impact towards the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

Media contact:
Elena Jiménez Vega  
Imagen y Comunicación Creativa
2283 7101, ext.105 / 8360-6362

Fabiola Domínguez