Finnova Foundation

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Thirty tourism startups to be accelerated by the European program CulturalDeTour

  • The CulturalDeTour Program Accelerator will assist a total of 30 small or early-stage cultural tourism businesses from Spain, Slovenia, and Greece.
  • For 6 months, from January to June 2024, the program, will provide participants with the skills needed to thrive in the sustainable cultural tourism industry.

A total of thirty emerging or small-sized cultural tourism companies will benefit from the CulturalDeTour Acceleration (CDTA) program, which will begin in January 2024. The selected companies will have the opportunity to strengthen skills critical to the growth and expansion of their businesses in the sector.

Of the 71 entries received, a total of 30 companies from Spain, Slovenia and Greece will participate in this initiative.  The companies bring diverse approaches and proposals within the field of cultural tourism. From initiatives focused on heritage preservation to innovative proposals in tourism experiences, these companies demonstrate an exceptional commitment to sustainability and innovation.

CDTA is a Creative Europe program in the framework of the CulturalDeTour project, a 6-month initiative that will start in January 2024. The accelerator uses the Earth-Centered Design methodology to drive innovation, sustainability, and business creation in the tourism sector through a design-driven process. The program will provide participants with the skills necessary to thrive in the sustainable cultural tourism industry.

New business models

The program promises to equip participants with the skills needed to thrive in the sustainable cultural tourism industry, with an emphasis on new business models, digitalization, technology, and sustainability through the Earth-Centered Design Methodology.

Participants will be able to benefit from a variety of resources to develop their businesses: four national workshops in the language of each participating country, two transnational workshops for cross-border understanding and collaboration, five hours of one-on-one mentoring on sustainability business modeling, access to industry experts for personalized guidance and advice, thematic courses and webinars from partner organizations, and networking to share best practices.

 

Selected companies

The Spanish companies that will participate in the CDTA program are:

Guía En Lanzarote

Baukunst Arquitectura y Patrimônio Virtual SLU

Viu els Ports

Integra-T Experience

Visitas Virtuales S.L.

Zwit Project

Excapic Experiencias Culturales S.L.

Sevilla con aluza

EIDOSD

DEL VIENTO Y RAICES SL

PLAY AND GO EXPERIENCE

PEPE SERRA MERCÉ

BE CURIOUS SL

Cluedux

Soca Bio-Art, S.L.

 

The Slovenian companies that will participate in the CDTA program are:

Zavod Ad Pontem

Hiša vina Andrejc

Vakog d.o.o.

Zavod Zeleni Žep – Green pocket Institute

Bravina d.o.o.

Domačija Škvor

Somapro d.o.o.

Vesela doživetja Tanja Vesel s.p.

JFDI d.o.o.

UI Turizem, Uršula Sreš s.p.

Vesna Merc s.p.

 

The Greek companies that will participate in the CDTA program are:FELEA GOODS LTD

Culture Hunters

Vedema

Ecomuseum Zagori

 

About Cultural DeTour

Creative Europe’s CulturalDeTour project, aims to use design-driven innovation and sustainability integration to drive collaboration and entrepreneurship in the cultural tourism sector, and create a strong cross-sector and transnational innovation network to enhance economic resilience during the recovery phase of COVID-19.

CulturalDeTour is the product of a unique collaboration between three heterogeneous but complementary partners from across the European Union: Envolve Entrepreneurship (Greece), Finnova (Spain) and Arctur (Slovenia).

 

 

 

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Finnova Foundation talks about sustainable development, water management, tourism and European funds at the Sun & Blue Congress on innovation in blue tourism

  • The congress, held in Almeria from 15 to 17 November, is a pioneering space on the blue economy applied to tourism at European level.
  • Finnova presented the European projects FU-TOURISM, LIFE COSTADAPTA, CulturalDeTour and LIFE ECODigestion 2.0, in which it is a partner.

17/11/2023, Brussels. Today, Friday 17 November, Juanma Revuelta, CEO of the Finnova Foundation, participated in the Sun & Blue Congress, an event held in Almeria focused on innovation in blue tourism. Sustainable development, water management, tourism and European funds were the main topics of his presentation at a congress that aims to position itself as a benchmark meeting at European level in the field of blue tourism, providing an opportunity to learn about successful initiatives in various destinations and with presentations by renowned experts related to tourism and marine conservation.

Juanma Revuelta took part in the round table “Smart Blue Islands”, a space in which the speakers discussed issues such as the perspective of islands as smart territories, the problem of insularity, the management of natural disasters and water management in those destinations most prone to suffer it and the use of European funds in island projects. The panel, moderated by Adolfo Borrero, senior advisor of Sun&Blue, also included Robert Tabone, representative of the Ministry of National Heritage, Arts and Local Government of Malta, Gustavo Ventura, secretary of tourism of the municipality of Ushuaia (Argentina), Carlos D. Gutiérrez, coordinator of the Fuerteventura Smart Island Project and Paola Plasencia, CEO of HECANSA.

Revuelta took advantage of this space to highlight the Foundation’s commitment to sustainable development, water management, tourism and the promotion of the financing of European projects through European funds such as LIFE, INTERREG, HORIZON and ERASMUS +.

The CEO of the Finnova Foundation explained Finnova’s role in projects related to these issues and also those that focus on island territories.

He presented the FU-TOURISM project, which supports European tourism SMEs in their transition to a green, digital and inclusive economy. The Consell Insular de Menorca is one of the partners in this project, budgeted at €4 million and funded by the SMP-COSME programme.

He also spoke about LIFE COSTAdapta, a project coordinated by the Energy Council of Gran Canaria whose objective focuses on the adaptation of the Gran Canarian coast to sea level rise by means of a Tidal pool-reef construction system. LIFE COSTAdapta is a 7-year project funded through the @LIFE Programme, with a budget of €3.4 million.

Another of the projects he explained was CulturaldeTour, which aims to boost collaboration and entrepreneurship in the cultural tourism sector, and has a 6-month Acceleration Programme to help startups and SMEs to expand their business, explore new models and improve sustainability practices. This programme is funded by Creative Europe and has a budget of €200,000.

Finally, Revuelta presented the success story of LIFE ECODigestion2.0, which focuses on the production of biogas from slurry, agri-food and organic waste from the HORECA sector. The project, led by Global Omnium, is funded by the LIFE programme and has a budget of €970,000.

About Finnova Foundation

Finnova is a Spanish-Belgian non-profit foundation working for the promotion and development of innovation and entrepreneurship at EU level. Based in Brussels, it operates through collaborations and partnerships in all EU countries. Finnova’s expertise in leading European project communication and dissemination activities is combined with a strong proven track record in start-ups and business support programmes, such as accelerators, incubators and ceremonial event selection and awarding.

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Finnova participates in the FU-TOURISM project for the transformation of SMEs towards a green, digital and inclusive economy

  • Funded with €4 million by the European COSME program and with a duration of 36 months, FU-TOURISM seeks to establish a robust ecosystem that will provide a lasting impact on the tourism sector, promoting its resilience to future challenges and aligning with the objectives of the EU’s European Green Pact
  • An acceleration program will identify and support a total of 102 tourism SMEs from the seven European countries that are part of the project: Croatia, Spain, Belgium, Greece, Austria, Poland and Italy.

13/11/2023 Brussels.  Juanma Revuelta, CEO of Finnova Foundation, has participated in Split (Croatia), in the official launch (kick off meeting) of the European project FU-TOURISM.  This project, funded by the European Commission through the COSME program (Program for the Competitiveness of Small and Medium Enterprises), aims to support the transition of European tourism SMEs towards a green, digital and inclusive economy.

FU-TOURISM has a budget of 4 million euros, has a duration of 36 months (3 years) and involves eight partners from seven European countries. The project is coordinated by Eupolis (Croatia), and has as partners Dubrovnik City (Croatia), Consell Insular de Menorca (Spain), Finnova Foundation (Belgium), Envolve (Greece), SYNYO (Austria), Vestbee (Poland) and Open Impact (Italy).

The circular economy and sustainable tourism are a priority for the Finnova Foundation, as explained by the CEO of the entity. “This project is a recognition of the public-private partnership methodology promoted by Finnova to achieve sustainability in the tourism sector,” said Revuelta.

Finnova has extensive experience working on innovative solutions to achieve environmental sustainability in tourism. The Foundation has promoted projects such as LIFE ECOBUS, focused on the reuse of oils from the horeca sector for use in transport in Valencia (European Green Capital 2024), an initiative that, more than 20 years after its launch, is still ongoing. Finnova has also been part of other tourism projects such as the Interreg POCTEP NAPOCTEP (to convert the heritage of the French invasion period into a quality and sustainable tourism product that can create wealth and employment in areas of Castilla-Leon and central Portugal threatened by depopulation and aging), and currently participates in CulturalDeTour, to promote innovation, sustainability and business creation in the tourism sector through a design-driven process.

FU-TOURISM is the second project belonging to the COSME program in which Finnova participates. It has recently been a partner in the CircularInnoBooster Fashion and Textile (F&T) project, a project aimed at transforming textile and fashion companies into sustainable, circular and regenerative enterprises.

STARTUP EUROPE ACCELERATION PROGRAMME

FU-TOURISM supports European tourism SMEs in their transition towards a green, digital and inclusive economy, with a focus on applying the principles of the regenerative economy. FU-TOURISM will develop a supportive ecosystem for tourism SMEs, promoting greater cooperation on innovation between these companies and incubators and accelerators in the sector. To this end, it will launch an acceleration program that will identify and support a total of 102 tourism SMEs from the six European countries that are part of the project through support services for sustainability, digitalization, inclusive business models and direct financial assistance.

During the acceleration program, 10 SMEs from each country will be selected in a transparent and open manner to receive a 5-month support and a grant of €20,000. In addition, the Scaling Up program will select 42 SME consortia (7 per country) to receive a grant of 30,000 euros and corresponding business support.

LIVING LABS FOR TOURISM SME TRANSITION

In the context of the European Union, the COSME Program has proven to be an engine of development for businesses and SMEs in Europe. FU-TOURISM is part of the list of projects funded by COSME between 2021 and 2027, standing out as a joint effort to boost economic growth, job creation and foster business competitiveness on the continent.

One of the key pillars of the FU-TOURISM project is the development of a platform and network of collaborative 4-Helix Clusters, known as Tourism SME Transition Living Labs. These clusters will enable SMEs to be placed at the center of the tourism ecosystem, adopting a multi-stakeholder approach that takes into account the broader needs of the destination, visitors and local citizens.

UNIQUE OPPORTUNITY TO TRANSFORM THE TOURISM SECTOR

FU-TOURISM not only represents an opportunity for European tourism SMEs, but also for the unique UNESCO tourist destinations; the city of DUBROVNIK, UNESCO Heritage City (inscribed in 1979), and the island of MENORCA, Biosphere Reserve (inscribed in 1993); which will be part of the pilot projects of the program.

These destinations will test the overall Destination Management Organizations (DMO) strategy and support for tourism SMEs, with the help of EUPOLIS, which will integrate the Tourism Impact Model (TIM) and the Digital Readiness Index (DRI) to measure and report on the sustainable and digital transition of SMEs and destinations.

The FU-TOURISM project, aligned with the objectives of the European Green Pact and the EU Digital Single Market, is presented as a unique opportunity to transform the tourism sector towards a greener, more resilient and digitized model.

PARTNERS:

About EUPOLIS GROUP LTD.

Eupolis Group is an innovation co-creation advisory, training, and development company. We promote wise, agile, integrated, collaborative design, investment, ecosystems, programs, projects, products and services that create value for people, economy and the planet. Our partners are businesses, public and civic organizations, innovators, experts, leaders and change makers passionate to explore disruptively innovative, regenerative, shared wealth business and governance models and value chains.

About ENVOLVE

Envolve Entrepreneurship is a business support organization that has been at the forefront of global entrepreneurial support since its establishment in 2012. The organization champions founders and ignites innovation through an open startup ecosystem founded on efficiency, transparency, and growth. Envolve acts as a talent and knowledge hub, offering cutting-edge upskilling, valuable resources, support for founders, and impactful services and programs to the global community.

Nurturing the next generation of global disruptors, Envolve re-introduces its flagship program, Envolve Accelerator, building upon the proven track record of the former Envolve Awards, in Greece and in the USA. In Greece, the program has fuelled the growth of 37 businesses and has injected over €6,000,000 into the economy, while fostering job creation and economic welfare.

About FINNOVA FOUNDATION

Finnova is a foundation that works for the promotion and development of innovation and entrepreneurship at the EU level. With headquarters in Brussels, it operates through collaborations and partnerships across EU countries. Finnova’s expertise in leading communication and dissemination activities for EU projects is coupled with strong proven experience in setting up businesses and entrepreneurial support programmes, like accelerators, incubators and selection and award/ceremonial events.

About VESTBEE

Vestbee is a leading online matchmaking platform in Europe, connecting VC funds, accelerators, business angels, and corporates with innovative startups and scaleups. Serving as a catalyst for the startup and VC community, Vestbee provides an extensive toolkit, infrastructure and community. Furthermore, it offers startups software to manage fundraising, and investors, corporates, and accelerators a streamlined method for managing deal flow, applications, innovation programs, and demo days. Collaborating with esteemed global partners like Amazon Web Services, Hubspot and Zendesk, Vestbee brings startups the best deals, exclusive perks, and complimentary access to business tools that bolster their growth and development

About SYNYO

SYNYO is a Vienna-based enterprise that develops novel methods, technologies and solutions for various domains and challenges. SYNYO analyses the impact of emerging technologies from an interdisciplinary perspective. The team at SYNYO has diverse expertise in fields like Social Sciences, ICT & Technology, Safety & Security,

Energy & Sustainability, Urban Future, Smart Health Digital Systems and Smart Technologies.

About DUBROVNIK CITY

The City of Dubrovnik, Croatia, serves its residents through various departments, focusing on population, social services, culture, sports, and infrastructure development. It actively supports tourism and promotes equal opportunities for people with disabilities. Additionally, it implements projects with European Union funds, especially in the areas of social welfare and heritage preservation.

About CONSELL MENORCA

The Council of Menorca is the self-governing institution of the island. It corresponds to the Council the government, administration and representation of the island and has a fundamental role in the coordination of the local’s administrations. It has competences in different matters, such as territorial planning, management and inspection of tourism sector, management of historical-artistic heritage, waste treatment, care and social assistance of disabled groups, child protection, along with other tasks.

About OPEN IMPACT

Open Impact is an innovative start-up and accredited spin-off of the University of Milano-Bicocca that provides services and develops digital products for the measurement, enhancement and management of impacts in a perspective of integrated sustainability. Open Impact (OI) was founded in 2019 thanks to the meeting of a mix of experiences and skills coming from the world of academic research, social innovation and digital development. By collecting and systematising a huge amount of internationally validated open-source impact assessments, Open Impact has managed to create the first database in Italy for impact benchmarking. The Open Impact Database is designed to support organisations in identifying the impact they generate, linking it to the 17 UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and other sustainability taxonomies, such as BES and ESG

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CulturalDeTour extends the deadline to apply for its Acceleration Program until November 19, 2023

  • This extension is an opportunity for those entrepreneurs who have not yet been able to apply
  • The program will help selected startups get off the ground, scale their business, explore new models and improve sustainability practices starting in January 2024

02/11/2023, Brussels. The CulturalDeTour project is extending the application deadline to be part of the CulturalDeTour Acceleration Program (CDTA), aimed at small or early-stage sustainable cultural tourism companies in Greece, Spain or Slovenia to scale and thrive in a constantly evolving market. The new deadline to participate in the program runs until Sunday, November 19, and interested parties can register through this link.

Europa Creativa presents this Program in the framework of the CulturalDeTour project, a 6-month initiative that will start in January 2024. The objective is to provide an opportunity for sustainable cultural tourism businesses to gain valuable insights and develop essential skills to grow and expand their businesses through digitization, technology and sustainability using the Earth-Centered Design Methodology. The CDTA Program seeks to drive innovation, sustainability and business creation in the tourism sector through a design-driven process. To this end, it will select 30 innovative teams, SMEs and early-stage sustainable cultural tourism companies based in Greece, Spain and Slovenia, operating within the cultural tourism sector, to grow and learn, expand their business, explore new models and improve sustainability practices. Emphasizing new business models, the program will provide participants with the necessary competencies to thrive in the sustainable cultural tourism industry.

Resources, guidance, networking

Between January and June 2024, participants will be able to benefit from four national workshops in the language of each participating country, two transnational workshops for cross-border understanding and collaboration; five hours of one-on-one mentoring on sustainability business modeling, access to industry experts for customized guidance and advice, thematic courses and webinars from partner organizations, and networking opportunities to share best practices.

During the 6-month duration of the CulturalDeTour Acceleration Program, those selected will have benefits such as:

  • Four national workshops in the language of each participating country and two transnational workshops.
  • Five hours of one-on-one mentoring on sustainable business models.
  • Access to industry experts
  • Thematic courses and webinars
  • Networking to share best practices

Who can apply?

The CulturalDeTour Accelerator Program welcomes startups, SMEs or early stage companies based in Spain, Greece or Slovenia, operating within the cultural tourism sector.

Program schedule and phases of support:

The CulturalDeTour Accelerator Program offers an unprecedented opportunity for sustainable cultural tourism businesses to gain valuable knowledge, develop critical skills and form strategic partnerships. Together, let’s revolutionize the future of cultural tourism.

  • Scope and Selection: September 2023
  • Application period: September 2023 – November 19, 2023
  • Selection of 30 companies
  • Announcement to applicants: December 10, 2023
  • Launch of CDT Accelerator Program: January 2024
  • End of CDT Acceleration Program: June 2024

Link to the project call on the website: https://www.culturaldetour.eu/en/take-part/culturaldetour-accelerator/

About Cultural DeTour:

Creative Europe’s CulturalDeTour project, aims to use design-driven innovation and sustainability integration to drive collaboration and entrepreneurship in the cultural tourism sector, and create a strong cross-sector and transnational innovation network to enhance economic resilience during the recovery phase of COVID-19.

CulturalDeTour is the product of a unique collaboration between three heterogeneous but complementary partners from across the European Union – Envolve Entrepreneurship (Greece), Finnova (Spain) and Arctur (Slovenia).

About Finnova:

Finnova is the Spanish-Belgian foundation based in Brussels and Spain (headquartered in Valencia), working for the promotion and development of innovation and entrepreneurship in the EU. Finnova’s experience in leading communication and dissemination activities of European projects is combined with a solid proven track record in business creation and entrepreneurship support programs, such as accelerators, incubators and events, as well as its commitment to training and employability of young people.

 

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Discussion on Cultural Diplomacy at the European Parliament

October 26, 2023, Brussels. Under the theme “The current challenges and needs of European cultural cooperation and cultural diplomacy: where do we go from here?” on Wednesday, October 25, 2023, an exchange of ideas was held at the SPINELLI 5G305 Room of the European Parliament in Brussels. This event was organized by MEP Ibán García del Blanco and the Finnova Foundation.

During the event, multiple representatives from the European Parliament’s Committee on Culture and Education, as well as experts in the field of cultural management, gathered.

A discussion moderated by Ibán García del Blanco, MEP from the Committee on Culture and Education (CULT)

The conversation was introduced by MEP García del Blanco, who emphasized the crucial role of culture, creativity, and artists in international relations, as well as in forming alliances and promoting peace agreements to prevent conflicts between countries. The MEP stressed that cultural diplomacy, with its capacity to have a global impact, should “include civil society and artists.” The reason is implicit: “creators can act as de facto ambassadors, underscoring the need to develop information, training, and mobility systems that influence the development of the sector in coordination with diplomatic entities,” he emphasized.

 

European diplomacy: the role of culture in European foreign policy, the multiplicity of actors, projects and programmes of European cultural cooperation and diplomacy.

In the first thematic panel, led by Salima Yenbou, MEP from the Committee on Culture and Education of the European Parliament, the conclusions of her most recent report were presented.

Yenbou highlighted that culture plays a fundamental role in allowing us to understand and celebrate diversity “both within and outside our borders.” A comprehensive political approach to strengthen international presence involves protecting cultural heritage against illegal trafficking and promoting the international dimension of culture. According to her, this requires effective intercultural communication and the protection of the intrinsic value of culture. In this context, there is a need for a “transformation of international cooperation relations, especially in the case of Europe towards Africa, where culture can play a prominent role,” the Euro-MP affirmed.

The MEP also emphasized the importance of adopting a “humanistic, humanitarian, and diplomatic” perspective on culture, promoting messages of peace, and ensuring freedom of artistic expression. Examples such as the recent European Parliament Film Awards demonstrate that this is not only an effective way to export European values but also to co-create and redefine them.

In conclusion, she highlighted the need to distinguish between traditional diplomacy and cultural relations at the international level. She also mentioned the idea of a pilot training project in culture and cultural diplomacy to boost participation in this field.

The UN 2030 Agenda: the power of culture in the face of contemporary challenges and sustainable artistic practices, youth, and examples of sustainable innovative actions in the field of creative and cultural industries, cultural cooperation, and cultural tourism

Juanma Revuelta, Executive Director of Finnova Foundation, addressed the various opportunities for European funding available to promote cultural innovation projects. He emphasized European programs specialized in this area, such as Creative Europe and Horizon Europe, which are strengthening their collaborations with the United Nations to achieve shared goals in this area.

Pablo Barrios Martínez, EU Project Officer of Finnova Foundation, highlighted the impact of culture in shaping more free, inclusive, and creative societies in line with European values. He also emphasized the role played by Finnova Foundation in promoting young talent and innovation. Moreover, he underscored the urgent need to increase investments in education and skills development to foster entrepreneurial spirit in this field.

To conclude, Mark Raemaekers, Senior Advisor of The Diplomatic World, presented The Phoenix Village Project as an example of how current market trends can be integrated with citizens’ needs from a perspective of creative innovation.

 

The next steps in the implementation of the EU Strategy for International Relations and its near future

In the third and final thematic panel, Gaia Danese, Policy Officer in Cultural Diplomacy at the European External Action Service (EEAS), emphasized the importance of the European Union adding value and seeking parliamentary involvement. Addressing the issue of academic diplomacy, she suggested the implementation of strategic training for ambassadors in this field, considering security standards.

Danese stressed the importance of freedom of expression, freedom of creation, and freedom of movement as universal values and rights shared globally. She also highlighted existing agreements with UNESCO and the need to effectively address propaganda.

Where are we heading?

Amidst a global crisis and the war in Ukraine, the European Commission, the European Parliament, and cultural entities continue to discuss the role of culture, creative industries, and cultural tourism in European international relations. Two key changes affect Europe: the need to reevaluate its cultural heritage in a context of decolonization of thought and the adaptation of the New European Bauhaus (NEB) to current values, in line with the fight against climate change.

After more than 15 years of the “European Agenda for Culture in a Globalizing World,” it is essential to assess and reflect on its progress, status, and its contribution to sustainable development by 2030.

The debate explored the current state of European cultural diplomacy, its roadmap, and how to use existing strategic resources to better coordinate the actions of public administrations abroad and avoid redundancy of functions. This exchange of ideas has provided insight into the challenges of European cultural diplomacy and cooperation and has laid the foundation for administrative, institutional, and diplomatic innovation.

What will be the next steps in the joint path of European Institutions and Member States to advance the implementation of the New Agenda for Culture and international relations?

Finnova Foundation continues to closely monitor institutional debates in this area and provides support to European cultural industries and the promotion of sustainable transition through projects like CulturalDeTour and initiatives like the international photography competition Art4Forest. We invite you to follow us to stay informed about our upcoming projects related to the promotion of cultural innovation.

About Finnova Foundation

Finnova is a foundation that works for the promotion and development of innovation and entrepreneurship at the EU level. Based in Brussels, it operates through collaborations and partnerships in all EU countries. Finnova’s experience in leading communication and project dissemination activities at the European level is combined with a proven track record in creating businesses and supporting business programs, such as accelerators, incubators, and event selection and awarding.

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Finnova Foundation presents some European projects to Talent Factory participants at the CSIC delegation in Brussels

  • Finnova Foundation has organised a meeting and training workshop for Talent Factory at the CSIC headquarters in Brussels
  • The aim of the event was to bring the work of the European institutions closer to young people and to present European projects such as Res4City, CulturaldeTour and LIFE ECOdigestion 2.0.

 

20/10/2023, Brussels. On Thursday 19 October at 11:00 (CEST) a meeting was held at the offices of the delegation of the Spanish National Research Council (CSIC) in Brussels, where Finnova presented three European projects to the young participants of the Talent Factory School Hackathon. In addition, the event was used to discuss opportunities for young people in the EU and working. Also, groups were organised with the participants of the initiative, where six municipal challenges related to the following topics were solved: waste collection, water saving, sustainable housing, more sustainable cities, and climate change.

 

The introductory speech was given by Elena Domínguez Cañas, institutional coordinator and CSIC delegate in Brussels, who presented the CSIC’s mission and highlighted the value of young talent, as well as the need to develop skills that foster creativity.

Pablo Barrios, head of cultural projects at Finnova, then took the floor. Barrios introduced the CulturaldeTour project, which focuses on using innovation to foster collaboration and entrepreneurship in the cultural tourism sector. The project has a budget of 200,000 euros and is led by three partners: Envolve Entrepreneurship (Greece), Finnova (Belgium) and Arctur (Slovenia).

The next speaker was Patricia Tejada, head of vocational training, Erasmus+ and training and youth at Finnova, who explained the European project Res4City, whose main objective is to address the skills shortage in the EU in the renewable energy sector, accelerating the energy transition. Res4City has a budget of 2.5 million euros and brings together 17 partners from eight countries, including the United Nations Institute for Training and Research (UNITAR). Tejada also talked about the EU transparency registration mechanism, a database of entities and organisations that seek to influence the formulation or implementation of European policies according to the interests of their constituencies.

Finally, Ester Mbomio, from Finnova’s communication department, presented the LIFE ECOdigestion 2.0 project, a project funded by the European LIFE programme that, through its technology, generates renewable energy (biogas) in water treatment plant digesters by mixing putrescible organic waste. This project has a budget of more than 970,000 euros and is led by Global Omnium (Spain) in collaboration with the Finnova Foundation (Belgium) and Aguas do Centro Litoral (Portugal).

Subsequently, working groups were organised in which the 24 young participants, together with the help of 6 company technicians and 6 trainers, developed their ideas through the design thinking methodology.

The event concluded with catering by Mediterranea Food & Events, specialists in Spanish products.

About the Finnova Foundation

Finnova is a foundation working for the promotion and development of innovation and entrepreneurship at EU level. Based in Brussels, it operates through collaborations and partnerships in all EU countries. Finnova’s expertise in leading European project communication and dissemination activities is combined with a strong proven track record in start-ups and business support programmes, such as accelerators, incubators and ceremonial event selection and awarding.

About Talent Factory

Talent Factory is an initiative that seeks to encourage entrepreneurship in a pedagogical level, helping young people to understand and prepare for the future of work. They create talent detection programmes in the classroom and, in the last 8 years, they have already trained more than 15,000 young people in entrepreneurial skills.

About CSIC

The Spanish National Research Council (CSIC) is a State Agency for scientific research and technological development, with a special legal status, its own assets and treasury, functional and managerial autonomy, full legal capacity and of unlimited duration.

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CulturalDeTour seeks 30 startups to develop cultural tourism in Greece, Slovenia and Spain

  • The program will help selected startups get off the ground, expand their business, explore new models, and improve sustainability practices starting in January 2024.

Are you an entrepreneur in the cultural tourism sector? This is your chance to shine! The CulturalDeTour Acceleration Program is looking for 30 startups and SMEs based in Spain, Greece or Slovenia.

Creative Europe presents this Program in the framework of the CulturalDeTour project, which aims to enable companies related to cultural tourism to gain valuable insights and develop essential skills to grow and expand their businesses through digitalization, technology and sustainability using the Earth-Centered Design Methodology, an approach that seeks to create products and experiences that are good for people and good for the planet.

Innovative entrepreneurs, SMEs or early stage sustainable cultural tourism businesses can be selected by the Program to undergo intensive business development, explore new business models and improve sustainability practices between January and June 2024.

Exclusive resources for the development of the companies in the Acceleration Program:

During the 6-month duration of the CulturalDeTour Acceleration Program, those selected will have benefits such as:

  • National and Transnational Workshops
  • Specialized Individual Mentoring
  • Access to Industry Experts
  • Thematic Courses and Webinars
  • Networking with the Best in the Industry

Who can apply?

The CulturalDeTour Accelerator Program welcomes startups, SMEs or early stage companies based in Spain, Greece or Slovenia, operating within the cultural tourism sector.

Apply through this form: https://bit.ly/CDTAapply

Program schedule and support phases:

  • Outreach and selection: September 2023.
  • Application period: September 2023 – October 31, 2023
  • Evaluation period: November 1, 2023 – November 30, 2023
  • Selection of 30 companies
  • Announcement to applicants: December 10, 2023
  • Launch of CDT Accelerator Program: January 2024
  • End of CDT Accelerator Program: June 2024.

About Cultural DeTour:

Creative Europe’s Cultural DeTour project aims to use design-driven innovation and sustainability integration to drive collaboration and entrepreneurship in the cultural tourism sector, and create a strong cross-sector and transnational innovation network to enhance economic resilience during the recovery phase of COVID-19.

CulturalDeTour is the product of a unique collaboration between three heterogeneous but complementary partners from across the European Union – Envolve Entrepreneurship (Greece), Finnova (Spain) and Arctur (Slovenia).

About Finnova:

Finnova is the Spanish-Belgian foundation based in Brussels and Spain (headquartered in Valencia), working for the promotion and development of innovation and entrepreneurship in the EU. Finnova’s experience in leading communication and dissemination activities of European projects is combined with a solid proven track record in business creation and entrepreneurship support programs, such as accelerators, incubators and events, as well as its commitment to training and employability of young people.

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CulturalDeTour Accelerator. A 6-month program for 30 startups and SMEs in the cultural tourism sector from Greece, Slovenia and Spain.

  • The program will help selected startups get off the ground, scale their business, explore new models and improve sustainability practices starting in January 2024.
  •  The deadline to apply is October 31, 2023.
  • The first information day of the accelerator program that is part of Creative Europe’s “CulturalDeTour” project will be held on Wednesday, September 27 in Valencia.

Empowering small or early-stage sustainable cultural tourism businesses in Greece, Spain or Slovenia to scale and thrive in a constantly evolving market. This is the main objective of Creative Europe’s CulturalDeTour Accelerator Program (CDTA), a 6-month acceleration initiative that offers an unprecedented opportunity for sustainable cultural tourism businesses to gain valuable insights and develop essential skills to grow and expand their businesses through digitization, technology and sustainability using the Earth-Centered Design Methodology. The deadline to apply remains open until October 31, 2023.

The CDTA Program seeks to boost innovation, sustainability and business creation in the tourism sector through a design-driven process. To this end, it will select 30 innovative teams, SMEs and early-stage sustainable cultural tourism companies based in Greece, Spain and Slovenia, operating within the cultural tourism sector, to grow and learn, expand their business, explore new models and improve sustainability practices from January 2024. Emphasizing new business models, the program will provide participants with the competencies needed to thrive in the sustainable cultural tourism industry.

Resources, guidance, networking.

Between January and June 2024, participants will be able to benefit from four national workshops in the language of each participating country, two transnational workshops for cross-border understanding and collaboration; five hours of one-on-one mentoring on sustainability business modeling, access to industry experts for personalized guidance and advice, thematic courses and webinars from partner organizations and networking opportunities to share best practices

Applications through October 31, 2023

Applications can be submitted online for new companies through https://bit.ly/CDTAapply

. The deadline for submission of applications is October 31, 2023

InfoDay on September 27

Coinciding with World Tourism Day, on September 27, 2023, “The Tourism Innovation Day” will be held in Valencia, a day that will host three international events in the tourism industry with the aim of establishing an ecosystem to support entrepreneurs and SMEs in the tourism sector, promoting innovation, growth and business creation in this industry.

The day will kick off with the event “CulturalDeTour Forum: cross-border cooperation for regional and innovative tourism with EU (European Union) funds”, a side event of the EU Regions Week, approved by the European Commission. It will launch the CDT Boost Acceleration Program to support cultural entrepreneurs in expanding and improving the sustainability of their activities. This event will be the first information day of the accelerator program that is part of Creative Europe’s “CulturalDeTour” project, which aims to support cultural entrepreneurs to expand their activities and improve sustainability.

An overview of the program will be provided, highlighting the benefits and opportunities it offers for your tourism business. This innovative event is part of the actions to achieve the overall objective of the project: to drive innovation, sustainability and business creation in the tourism sector through a design-driven process.

At the second event “Fu-Tourism 5.0” Forum: Valencia, towards sustainable tourism, the European COSME project “FU-TOURISM 5.0- Business support ecosystem for the transition of tourism SMEs towards green resilience” will be presented. With a budget of €4 million, it aims to support European tourism SMEs in their transition towards a green economy by launching an acceleration program that will support 102 SMEs through sustainability support services, inclusive business models and direct financial assistance.

The day will end with the presentation of the Social Founders Award 2023: tourism and women, aimed at projects driven by women in the idea, startup or entrepreneur phase. In this year’s edition, awards will be given to those projects and successful cases of female entrepreneurship in Tourism and Social that support and create a better world.

About the Cultural DeTour project

The Cultural DeTour project aims to use design-driven innovation and sustainability integration to drive collaboration and entrepreneurship in the cultural tourism sector, and to create a strong cross-sector and transnational innovation network to enhance economic resilience during the recovery phase of COVID-19.

Cultural DeTour is the product of a unique collaboration between three heterogeneous but complementary partners from across the European Union: Envolve Entrepreneurship (Greece), Finnova (Spain) and Arctur (Slovenia).

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