Business incubators, innovation hubs and partnerships

Partners and partnerships

The University can count on a broad, solid cooperation network, thanks to its constant commitment to creating new partnerships with other institutions, organisations, programmes and key stakeholders who may be interested in promoting new initiatives through acceleration programmes fostering the growth of start-ups.

The key strategic partners include:

The University of Bologna also counts on national and international partners to integrate its own business support actions. Among these:

  • Intesa SanPaolo, a partnership working on a range of different business support initiatives
  • Materias, VC investment fund for Proofs of Concept, specialised in Materials
  • MITO, VC investment fund for Proofs of Concept, specialised in the energy sector
  • Vertis, VC investment fund for Proofs of Concept, specialised in Industry 4.0
  • Golinelli Foundation - G Factor Program, the acceleration programme for newcos in the life science sector
  • Agrofood BIC, accelerator supporting new start-ups, providing organisational and strategic support
  • CNA Emilia Romagna: represents craftsmen, retailers, professionals, freelance workers, micro and small businesses in the tourism, services and industrial sectors.
  • Confindustria Emilia Centro: business association born from the merging of Unindustria Bologna, Unindustria Ferrara and Confindustria Modena, leading to the creation of a single association able to guarantee better representation of an area that aims to be Italy’s top manufacturing district
  • Confindustria Emilia Romagna: main regional organisation representing the industrial concerns of Emilia-Romagna
  • Lega Coop Bologna: representational association of cooperatives, businesses and institutions of Bologna belonging to the Legacoop Cooperative Federation. It is the provincial branch of Legacoop Emilia-Romagna
  • Ryerson University, one of the major university incubators whose programmes are among the best in North America
  • Alleanza UNA, association of seven prestigious European universities (KU Leuven, Freie Universitat Berlin, University of Bologna, Uniwersytet Jagiellonski in Krackow, Universitad Complutence de Madrid, University of Edinburgh and Université Paris 1 Panthéon Sorbonne) set up as a permanent cooperation laboratory supporting the development of research and innovation
  • ART-ER, a consortium of the Emilia-Romagna Region, the regional universities and some of the major national research centres (CNR, ENEA, INFN)

Business incubators and innovation hubs

The University works constantly to support the development of business incubators, fostering the growth of a network of partners of know how and sourcing the financial support needed to ensure effectiveness throughout the incubation process.


Almacube is the University of Bologna innovation hub and business incubator that works to promote economic development in the area through innovation and the birth of new businesses, cooperation with existing companies and educating the new generations to a business approach.

Go to the Almacube website


Cesena Lab works with businesses in the digital, web & new media field, and focuses on the growth of successful businesses in the Cesena area. It presents the projects to a large number of industrial investors and investment funds to help new businesses grow quickly.

Go to the Cesenalab website

Rimini Innovation square

The Rimini Innovation Square connects all the members of the innovation ecosystem in Rimini in a single place, aiming to foster the growth of anyone wishing to develop innovative business projects and contribute to the innovation of the whole territorial system, in harmony with social well-being and development.

Go to the Rimini Innovation Square website