Tec community teams up with universities abroad to help MSEs survive the economic crisis caused by the COVID-19 pandemic
By Wendy Gutiérrez | Santa Fe Campus - 11/30/2020

Tec de Monterrey is collaborating with MIT in the MIT GeneSys project, with the aim of improving the survival rate of micro and small enterprises in emerging markets through better business and supply chain practices.

This project was founded in 2016 by Dr. Josué Velázquez, a Tec graduate. Since then, the Tec has participated in the project with the involvement of more than 10 professors and 400 students from six campuses (Mexico City, State of Mexico, Puebla, Monterrey, Laguna, and Santa Fe).

Currently, MIT GeneSys is present in nine countries in Latin America: Argentina, Bolivia, Brazil, Colombia, Chile, Ecuador, Peru, Mexico, and Uruguay. More than 20 universities are taking part, among which Tec de Monterrey stands out as that with the highest participation of students and teachers.

During the August-December 2020 semester, the project has focused on helping MSEs to mitigate the economic crisis caused by the COVID-19 pandemic in three areas.

The first focuses on improving cash availability in MSEs through improvements in supply chain management, i.e. the relationship between suppliers, customers, and replenishment strategies.


 El Tec y el MIT colaboran para ayudar a micro y pequeñas empresas


The second focuses on the adoption of technology that allows MSEs access to e-commerce, to offer their products/services.

Finally, the third area focuses on identifying the best hygiene and biosecurity practices for MSEs in the food sector.

More than 100 students from the Mexico City, Mexico State, Puebla, Monterrey, Laguna and Santa Fe campuses are participating under the supervision of professors Jaime Palma, Iván Arana, Claudia Garay, Ileana Ruíz, Fabiola Lima, and Camilo Mora.


An initiative to transform cities sustainably

The MIT GeneSys project is part of Tec de Monterrey's Center for Sustainable Logistics (CSL) initiative.

The CSL is an academic and research platform run in collaboration with Dr. Josué Velázquez from the MIT Sustainable Logistics Laboratory, and professor Jan C. Fransoo from Tilburg University.

The center seeks to promote the development of applied research through the interdisciplinary interaction of students, teachers, companies, and government to transform cities sustainably.

Dr. Karla Valenzuela, director of the School of Engineering and Sciences at the Santa Fe campus and leader of the CSL, emphasized that the sustainable development of cities is one of the components of the initiative’s 2030 vision, within the context of our cities.

MSEs are an important part of the panorama. Therefore, the possibility of proposing improvements for these companies can encourage orderly and fair development between different sectors.

“I would like to thank the students who are taking part, since they are a fundamental part of our raison d’être and of this collaboration, and the teachers who get involved every semester to think about how to benefit of our students and our community, as well as MIT for seeing us as part of the team to carry out this and other projects," she said.


El Tec y el MIT colaboran para ayudar a micro y pequeñas empresas


Seeking to generate new lines of knowledge

Since the MIT GeneSys project was founded, the commitment of professors such as Dr. Jaime Palma or Iván Arana, who have participated since its inception, has allowed the collaboration between the two institutions to be maintained and improved.

Dr. Ileana Ruíz, Director of the Industrial Engineering degree at the Monterrey campus, highlighted that the MIT GeneSys project has allowed students to connect with universities in Latin America.

"We want to generate an impact on MSEs through a structured methodology, achieving very valuable results for companies, which gives us an opportunity to generate new lines of knowledge, for which I am very grateful," she said.

Within the project, the participation of teacher Camilo Mora also stands out. In addition to being a professor at the Santa Fe Campus, he serves as Project Manager at MIT GeneSys.

Professor Mora was invited to collaborate in 2017 to lead the development of the MIT GeneSys App.

"I led the development team for the mobile application "MIT GeneSys App", which allows data to be gathered from students with microenterprises and facilitates the interpretation of results to give them recommendations.

The purpose of MIT GeneSys is to increase the survival potential of micro and small enterprises in emerging markets,” he said.

Mora emphasized that this project will have a high impact on the region because teachers, students, and MSEs are involved through a collaboration with MIT, the number one university in the world.

El Tec y el MIT colaboran para ayudar a micro y pequeñas empresas


Students to represent the Tec at GeneSys Fest 2020

The MIT GeneSys Fest 2020 will be held on December 4. This is an event that seeks to disseminate the best projects carried out in Latin America to help MSEs survive during the Coronavirus crisis.

Tec students from the Mexico City, State of Mexico, Puebla, Monterrey, Laguna, and Santa Fe campuses will present the applied research projects they carried out with Mexico's MSEs from different sectors.





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