“Barcelona must continue to invest in innovation and entrepreneurship” by Stefano De Liguoro
Stefano De Liguoro is 42 years old and is married with two children. Born in Varese near Milan, Stefano lived in Italy and Switzerland before moving to Barcelona in 2007. He is the CDO and business director of the insurance company Zurich in Spain and heads up the company’s international business digitalization unit.
Why did you choose Barcelona?
After my first degree, I studied in Barcelona for a master’s. When the new multinational digital hubs were being created, I had the chance to return and then I decided to stay on.
What do you consider to be the city’s strengths?
Its international scope and its focus on business and creativity.
What aspects of the city need to be improved? How?
The city should market its strengths. I think Barcelona has everything it takes to be an outstanding economic and social ecosystem, but it needs all the key players, both public and private, to come together to make it happen. Together with the unbeatable location, climate, and environment, the right approach could make Barcelona one of the business hubs of the future.
What do you think will help the city to overcome the Covid-19 crisis?
I believe that flexibility, adaptability and the steady recovery of tourism will help to make Barcelona dynamic again. Large international hubs, such as those that have been set up in recent months, are also crucial.
What challenges do you think the city will face once the health emergency has died down?
Like many other cities, Barcelona’s main challenges are linked to the sectors that have suffered most from the crisis. These include the automotive industry and SMEs, in which digitalization and teleworking are now essential for gaining a competitive edge.
What do you expect from Barcelona in the coming years?
I expect it to reassert its commitment to creation and innovation in start-ups, to promote the digital start-up ecosystem, and to bring together the initiatives of public entities, universities and multinationals.
Where do you feel most at home? What do you miss the most?
I have been living here for 15 years now. I feel at home in Barcelona, although I was born in Milan. What do I miss? Little or almost nothing… maybe my mother’s home cooking!
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