We remember and celebrate the life of Dr Jesper Vasell who passed away on 13 June 2022 during a business trip in Uganda. Jesper had a passion for improving innovation management in academic and research environments. At the time of his demise, Jesper was consulting with us on innovation, academic management of intellectual assets and business incubation. He served as the director of the Global Development Hub (GDH) at the KTH Royal Institute of Technology, and partnered with several universities in East Africa. We remember Jesper for his humility, open mindedness, and intellectual prowess, especially on matters regarding research for societal impact.