Vale is offering the MINE (Mining Innovation for a New Environment) program in collaboration with the MIT Professional Education, MIT Environmental Solutions Initiative, Brazil-based SENAI CIMATEC and startup accelerator the Bakery. The program gives 30 professionals the opportunity to help develop and build the future of mining – safer, more sustainable, and more efficient – through open innovation.
The MINE Program seeks to solve Vale’s strategic problems, develop people and generate a positive impact on society. For nine months, between April and December, participants will develop solutions to solve 10 current challenges of the company in the areas of decarbonization, circular economy, and health and safety.
These topics were chosen because of their importance to Vale’s strategy of being recognized as a reference in safety, a leader in low-carbon mining and also a company that creates and shares value.
“Our goal is to invite the external public to contribute to overcoming global obstacles, forming agents of change capable of helping us to build the mining of the future,” Marcos Calderon, member of Vale’s open innovation team, said in a release.
Vale is responsible for selecting the challenges, mentoring and technical monitoring of the proposed solutions, opening its operations to collaboration from external participants and financing scholarships. Faculty and researchers from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology have designed and developed the program content; SENAI CIMATEC will support and tutor the participants, while the Bakery will be responsible for accelerating the challenges.
“We are working at MINE with some of the most innovative institutions in the market, as part of our goal to become a more agile, digital and collaborative company,” added Gustavo Roque, manager of ferrous innovation management.
Applicants to the program should have an agile and entrepreneurial mindset, technical knowledge in the area of the challenge, be fluent in English and have a college degree in any subject. The program is looking for innovative people who know how to work collaboratively to solve problems based on new ideas and approaches. The participants must not have any employment commitments, since they will be receiving scholarships to be dedicated exclusively to the program.
The first edition of the MINE program was held between November 2019 and June 2020. Ten challenges were solved in the areas of digital transformation and decarbonization. Solutions that prove to be viable in the 2.0 edition may be implemented in Vale’s operations.