The Convening Power of ECHAlliance: Spanish Ecosystem Gathering

The Convening Power of ECHAlliance: Spanish Ecosystem Gathering

How ECHAlliance’s convening power brought together Spanish health innovators for unprecedented networking and knowledge sharing


As we continue to look at HOW we work with our members we want to focus on specific examples on how Connect, Convene, Amplify and Accelerate with our members. This time we want to do a deep dive to show you a really great example where we convened our entire Spanish Community of members, ecosystems and project partners.

Last November we used our convening ability to bring together 31 speakers from across Spain and abroad and a packed room of 70 attendees in Barcelona in a two-day programme for our very first Spanish Ecosystem Gathering.

Coinciding with the Spanish Presidency of the Council of the European Union (June – December 2023), the goal of this gathering, jointly organised with our Catalan ecosystem led by AQuAS, was to bring together our community of Spanish members and ecosystems to network between each other and learn best practices.

This 2-day ecosystem event was a great success as ECHAlliance managed to showcase our 6 Spanish ecosystems as well as 12 of our members working across Spain, ranging from key companies operating in the health sector, government agencies or universities to patient organisations and health clusters. as well as highlighting the great task of 7 different EU funded projects. With this gathering, ECHAlliance provided an excellent opportunity to create synergies and to generate fruitful and direct collaboration across members and ecosystems.

Day 1 – Spanish Ecosystem Gathering


The event started on the 22nd of November, moderated by ECHAlliance’s Andy Bleaden, Inés Luján and Iman Amar, with the launch of the ECHAlliance Spanish Presidency Connector featuring our community in Spain by ECHAlliance’s Adriana Díaz. You can take a look at the document here.

Our gathering then focused on our Spanish ecosystems with presentations from:


Next, we shifted the spotlight to our Spanish members or working in Spain, such as Better or McKinsey. The audience had the chance to hear more about the work of our members, including all stakeholders from patient organisations, government bodies, researchers and companies:

Panel debate on “How to go international?”

Finally, a panel debate on “How to go international”, moderated by ECHAlliance’s Adriana Díaz, closed the event. Jovan Pavićević, International Markets Director, Better, Àuria Albacete, Senior Innovation Project Leader, BIOCAT, Gisela Garcia-Alvarez, Managing Director, Cluster Saúde de Galicia and Jonathan Gómez-Raja, Chief Scientific Officer, FundeSalud, inspired the audience by sharing their experience in successfully going international, either through EU projects, international programs for start-ups or learning expeditions. 

Day 2 – Health Procurement Thematic Innovation Ecosystem

The gathering continued on the 23rd of November with our Health Procurement Thematic Innovation Ecosystem (TIE) led by AQuAS.

Focusing on the topic of “From regular health procurement to value based health procurement”, the TIE started with a welcome by ECHAlliance’s Andy Bleaden and AQuAS’ Ramon Maspons, followed by a keynote speech by Neus Colet from Public Procurement DG, Generalitat de Catalunya.

We then heard from Patricia Ripoll, President of Fundación Visible, ECHAlliance Member, about how to involve patients in value-based health procurement. On the needs side, we had the chance to hear about the needs of healthcare professionals from Marta Aurora Rubiera del Fueyo, Stroke Neurologist at Hospital Vall d’Hebron; the needs of procurers from Rossana Alessandrello, Value Based Procurement Director at AQuAS & Coordinator of Value Based Procurement Subcommission of the Innovation & Transformation Departamental Commission of Catalonian Health System; and the needs of suppliers from Joan Escudero, Digital Health Director at Evidenze Group.

The morning finished with key messages from practitioners, including the following EU Projects and again many ECHAlliance members and ecosystems:

  • CRANE – Jonathan Gómez-Raja, Chief Scientific Officer, FUNDESALUD
  • EcoQUIP+ – George Valiotis, Executive Director, European Health Management Assocation (EHMA)
  • RaDAR – Maddalena Illario, Professor of Public Health and R&D Unit Coordinator, University of Naples Federico II
  • oncNGS – Gordana Raicevic, Scientific Project Coordinator, Sciensano
  • TIQUE – Caterina Sampol, Transformational change and value based procurement manager, Hospital de la Santa Creu i Sant Pau (ES)
  • MITMEVA – Laura Sampietro, Deputy Director of Innovation and Head of Innovation Assessment Unit, Hospital Clínic Barcelona
  • DYNAMO PCP – Oscar Zanutto, FABER Coordinator, ISRAA


As ECHAlliance, we aim to recreate this type of convening event format in 2024 in other European regions as overall it showed the value of convening a national community of Ecosystems and members of ECHAlliance.


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