“I decided to create IMEK to contribute to society in the solution of problems related to Health, Education and Gender, from what I like to do the most, which is marketing, and taking as a guide the learning that I have had as a volunteer of social organizations and working with the government, private sector and academia. The purpose is for IMEK to serve as a bridge to connect the needs of the most neglected populations, with those people and organizations with the capacity to generate structural changes to improve people’s conditions and quality of life. IMEK’s main contribution will be scientific evidence and the generation of investigative capacities to make decisions that have the great est potential to generate social, economic and environmental impact, leading to greater sustainable development. All this keeping people and the environment at the center”

- N. Aya Pastrana

The idea of creating IMEK Research Center in Marketing & Development began in Santiago de Cali, Colombia, between 2012 and 2014.

This idea was motivated by the founder's own experiences and in response to the inequities and inequalities present in the country.

In 2015 we began to devise how to materialize the Foundation, within the framework of a social entrepreneurship program, Campus Nova, of the Javeriana University of Cali. In the ideation processes developed as part of this program, needs were identified to enhance the scope of the project and to delimit its field of action so that it would be achievable. In response to these findings, between 2016 and 2019 we worked on how to respond to the identified needs and further developed the idea. In this period of time we also got to know first - hand other similar contexts in the
Global South and expanded our network of contacts internationally. In 2020, in the midst of a pandemic context that made the relevance of creating an organization like ours more visible, approaches were made with experts in the Colombian legal, accounting and scientific context.

These conversations allowed progress in determining the best way to register the organization. Thus, in 2021, the legal procedures were formally initiated and IMEK Research Center in Marketing & Development was officially established as a Non-Profit Organization of the category Foundation.


Our purpose is to contribute to sustainable development in the areas of health, education, and gender through high - quality research in marketing and communication.

IMEK Research Center in Marketing & Development seeks to develop, support and promote research using marketing and communication for development perspectives, to study and understand social issues related to health, education and gender that limit sustainable development and that foster social inequities and inequalities.
By 2032 we want to become a national and international benchmark in research in marketing and communication for sustainable development of high quality and impact, connecting through our activities, including our research, the most underserved populations with those with the capacity to generate structural changes in programs and public policies in the areas of health, education and gender.



We act with responsibility, rectitude, honesty, coherence, ethics and transparency, respecting diversity and plurality of thought; we value two - way communication with our stakeholders to facilitate processes of accountability and good governance.


We are an organization committed and oriented to the maximum development of our internal capacities while responding to the possibilities offered by the environment and safeguarding regulatory compliance, to guarantee the fulfillment of our organizational purpose to positively impact society and the planet.


We act with institutional and decision - making autonomy with respect to any governmental, intergovernmental, private company or any other entity outside the Foundation.

Collaborative work

We believe that collaboration, multidisciplinarity and networking, respecting our principles and values, are essential to achieve our organizational purpose and to co - create value for society and the planet.


We contribute to the development of society and the planet, basing our actions on the respect for human rights and protecting the social, cultural, economic and environmental heritage of the context where we operate, while guaranteeing the sustainability of our Foundation.


Our intuitive ability, intellectual curiosity, dedication and imagination allow us to generate ideas and solve problems by visualizing various ways to positively transform the environments in which we operate.



With patience and commitment, we carry out the planned activities despite the limitations that arise along the way.


We work in healthy coexistence and harmony, recognizing and valuing diversity and difference as key elements for the collective construction of fairer societies. We promote equitable treatment aimed at equality and inclusion.


We seek to contribute to the construction of society more just, inclusive, equitable, sustainable and in harmony with the planet.


We seek to establish dialogue with different interest groups and to speak a language that transcends academia.


We continually seek to improve to adapt to changing environments and new scenarios.

Self - reflection

We seek continuous improvement and encourage a critical spirit to evaluate our actions and the impact we exert through them on society and the planet.

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Stephanie Aya Pastrana, MSc
Adherent Member


Stephanie is an architect from the Pontificia Universidad Javeriana Cali with a master’s degree in Urban Strategies and Design from the University of Edinburgh. She has professional experience in the design and development of architectural projects of different scales, also developing research projects related to the quality of public spaces in Cali (Colombia) and sustainable construction. She currently works as a consultant and full-time professor at the Faculty of Creation and Habitat of the Pontificia Universidad Javeriana Cali.