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From left to right, Teresa Basilio, FC Barcelona cultural delegate; the rector of the University of Milan, Elio Franzini; director responsible for BIHUB, Marta Plana, and manager of Ramon Llull Institute, Josep Marcé

FC Barcelona and the Ramon Llull Institute (IRL), together with the University of Milan (Università degli Studi di Milano), have organized a cultural day titled Barça: Sport, Valori e Identità (Barça: Sport, Values and Identity), on occasion of Tuesday's Champions League game with Inter Milan. At this event, the club explained what it is doing with the Barça Innovation Hub (BIHUB), the platform that combines its research, innovation and training projects.

The event featured Marta Plana, FC Barcelona director responsible for the BIHUB; Javier Sobrino, Barça's director of Strategy and Innovation; Josep Marcé, manager of the IRL, and doctor Giuliano Torrengo, founder and coordinator of the Centre for Philosophy of Time at the University of Milan. The other guests included Barça's Cultural Delegate, ​​Teresa Basilio, and representatives of the Government of Catalonia, the delegate in Italy, Luca Bellizzi, and the director of Catalonia Trade & Investment, Luis Polo.

The session in lecture hall 11 used a round table format, and was moderated by Alessandro Cassol, president of the Collegio Didattico di Lingue at the University of Milan, with the theme of discussion being the Barça Innovation Hub (BIHUB).

This is a strategic initiative whereby the club is taking an active role in generating value for society and helping to confront the changes that the sports industry will be facing in the coming years through its three main areas of activity: developing and sharing knowledge, transforming this knowledge into innovation through integration in new products and services and fostering an open and collaborative culture that facilitates a collaborative ecosystem involving the different agents of the sports industry. These three main areas of activity are materialised as a 'laboratory of sports' that is working on a number of different projects.

The session explored the goals and projects set out in the seven areas in which the BIHUB is working: team sports, sports performance, sports analysis and technology, health and wellness, engagement and big data, smart facilities and social innovation.

LONGSTANDING PARTNERSHIP

This activity forms part of the collaboration agreement between FC Barcelona and the IRL that was renewed last October, and that both organisations have maintained since 2012, the purpose of which is to organise joint activities aimed at the external projection of Catalan language and culture. This is channelled through different academic and cultural activities related to Barça and Catalan culture at foreign universities where Catalan is studied, the #XarxaLlull network. The club and the IRL use the matches played by the football team in different European cities in the Champions League as an ideal opportunity to conduct such awareness activities.

STATEMENT BY MARTA PLANA, DIRECTOR RESPONSIBLE FOR BARÇA INNOVATION HUB:

“This event has been extraordinary because it has promoted the Barça Innovation Hub and raised awareness of the club's work in terms of sporting excellence, innovation and technology. And we have done this in association with the Ramon Llull Institute and the University of Milan, which has helped to broaden the global impact of the project”.

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