The #ACXchange

The Americas Competitiveness Exchange (ACE) is the Premier Economic Development, Innovation, and Entrepreneurial Network of the Americas and is one of the leading High–Level programs of the Organization of American States (OAS). 

Through knowledge-sharing, accelerating partnerships, and strengthening projects, the ACE program is committed to improving economic development, innovation, entrepreneurship ecosystems, and competitiveness performance in the Americas and other regions.

The Objectives

The ACE Community is leading change towards innovation-driven and resilient economies

Identifying and sharing best practices in economic development

Stimulating capital investment and job creation in the region

Fostering an environment for innovative companies to startup and expand

Bringing together universities, industries, and governments to solve complex challenges

Facilitating commerce and trade

Promoting economic resiliency

Enhancing opportunities for underrepresented populations

Get Engaged!

Take part of our activities:

1

Apply for the week-long programs that take place twice a year

2

Apply to host ACE programs in your countries/cities/communities

3

Contribute/attend to other ACE related activities.

The #ACXchange week-long program

Twice a year we select up to 50 top global and regional leaders through a highly competitive process.

The selected VIP leaders will travel through different cities during a week to visit top innovation hubs, advanced research and technology centers, cutting-edge companies and business development organizations, and leading academic institutions.

Georgia North and South Carolina, United States
March 31 to April 4, 2014

Mexico DF, Aguascalientes and Guadalajara, Mexico
August 11 to 15, 2014

Minnesota, Wisconsin, and Illinois, United States
August 19 to 24, 2015

Province of Córdoba, Argentina
October 26 to 30, 2015

Arizona and California, United States
April 10 to 16, 2016

Province of Ontario, Canada
September 25 to October 1, 2016

Texas, United States
April 2 to 7, 2017

Florida, United States
December 3 to 9, 2017

Special Edition in Germany and Israel
June 24 to 29, 2018

Northern California, United States
October 21 to 27, 2018

Puerto Rico, United States
May 18 to 25, 2019

Chile
October 6 to 10, 2019

Colorado, United States
August 1 to 6, 2021

Louisiana, United States
November 7 to 14, 2021

Who is eligible to be part of the week-long program

Top decision-makers who are transforming their countries, cities, and communities in areas related to economic development, innovation, and entrepreneurship including:

Women and young professionals are encouraged to participate. We strive to achieve geographical, sectorial and gender balance.

Eligible actors must be citizens of OAS Member States and Permanent Observer Countries to the OAS

Other ACE related activities

Additional activities are offered to boost connections and accelerate collaboration opportunities among key stakeholders from the Americas and beyond through

ACE Talks

Technical Assistance

B2B Conversations

Who offers the program?

The program is offered by the Organization of American States as the Inter-American Competitiveness Network (RIAC) Technical Secretariat, with the support from the Government of the United States, through the U.S. Department of Commerce [the Economic Development Administration (EDA) in coordination with the International Trade Administration (ITA)] and the U.S. Department of State/Permanent Mission of the United States to the OAS.

I believe that at the end of the day competitiveness is really about rethinking the way we do things in our everyday lives. And I think participants through ACE have the opportunity to do exactly that, to look at what are the needs in their countries and how do they translate those needs into new opportunities thinking creatively, being innovative in their approach, and really focusing in harnessing an entrepreneurship spirit in order to get things done.
Kim Osborne
Executive Secretary for Integral Development
Organization of American States (OAS)

Meet the ACE Team

Dr. Barrett Haga

Senior Engagement Administrator
Economic Development Administration
U.S. Department of Commerce

Julianna Aynes-Neville

Alternate Representative
Permanent Mission of the U.S. to the OAS/ U.S. Department of State

Dr. Maryse Robert

Director of the Department of Economic Development Organization of American States

César Parga

Chief of the Section of Competitiveness, Innovation and Technology
Organization of American States

Valeria Vargas

Economist
Economic Development Administration
U.S. Department of Commerce

Robin Merse

Economist
Economic Development Administration
U.S. Department of Commerce

Adriana Bonilla

Coordinator of the Americas Competitiveness Exchange (ACE)
Organization of American States

Cristina Narváez

Consultant of the Americas Competitiveness Exchange (ACE)
Organization of American States

Juan Fonseca

Designer and web developer for the Inter-American Competitiveness Network (RIAC)
Organization of American States
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