A Vast Array of Opportunities from the Nex-Labs Project to Foster Cross-Border Innovation and Entrepreneurship to Build a Sustainable Water-Food-Energy Ecosystem in the Mediterranean
The NEX-LABS project has launched a vastarray of opportunities to support the growth of innovation and entrepreneurship in the Mediterranean region. The project, whichisfunded by the European Union under the ENI CBC MED program, aims to establishcross-border cooperation between startups, incubators, and accelerators in Italy, Lebanon, Tunisia, Cyprus, Spain, Egypt and Jordan.
The aim of the projectis to create a network of innovation labs in each of the sevenparticipating countries to providesupport, training, and mentorship to young entrepreneurs. Theselabswillfacilitate the exchange of knowledge, expertise, and best practicesbetween startups and established businesses to foster growth and development in the Mediterraneanregion’seconomy.
Afteralmost 3 years of work, the international consortium has reached a series of important milestonestowards the creation of a sustainableecosystem in the water, energy and food nexus. This enhancement of innovation and entrepreneurship a cross the Mediterranean region is leading to capacity building, stronger public and privatepartnerships, global competitiveness and inclusive growth.
To this end, the Mediterraneanregionprojectpartners have workedtogether to establish a vastarray of vouchers for Water-Energy-Food innovators.
The following two calls are open to researchers and entrepreneurs with an interest in developing and/or commercializing existing or new WEF NEXUS related products and services in Jordan, Lebanon, or in eligible countries of the Mediterranean region.
- The NEXUS IdeaGenerationProgrammewill engage 30 candidates and giveaccess to free virtua ltraining, advice, business model prototyping of their business idea for WEF +ICT. Through a final competition, 20 researchers or entrepreneurs, will be granted additional support such as funding, market explore, commercialization, and access to an expert mentor to assist in validating technologies and business models. Awarding will be on a first come, first serve basis – Read more and apply.
- Innovation vouchers for entrepreneurs and SMEs based in Cyprus, Italy, Egypt, Jordan, Lebanon, Spain, Tunisia; the call is openuntil 30 September 2023. The vouchers willgrant free expertise in Processdevelopment, Business modeling, Technology, IPR, Strategy, Marketing, Industry linkages, Exporting, Regulations. Awardingwillbe on a first come, first serve basis. Please note thateach country has differentcriteria and application procedurespleaseconsult the followingdedicated landing pages: Cyprus, Italy, Egypt, Jordan , Lebanon, Spain , Tunisia.
Additionalgrantsdedicated to the Lebaneseecosysteminclude:
- 4 Incubator Vouchers to Lebanese startups and SMEs and willgrant 20.000 euros worth of services such as co-workingspace, facilities, coaching and mentorshipfrom experts in the WEF fieldqualified to accompanyselected candidates in a business plan development, a go-to-marketstrategy, the development of a marketing plan and to provide legal advice. The aim of this collaboration isto support 4 new promising businesses in validatingtheir business model and technology, and access to marketopportunities. The application willbe open until all vouchers are assigned. Read more to apply.
- 8 Testing Vouchers toearly-stage start-ups, includingphysical infrastructure and know-how to test and validate prototypes, products, services, materials, pilot processes, methods. Successful start-ups will have an opportunity to correct anyerrorsefficiently and effectivel The continuousimprovement of product and processes, ensuresquality, efficiency and competitiveness, a requirement to attract investors and to access the market. The application willbe open until all vouchers are assigned. Read more to apply.
- 2 Commercialization Vouchersdedicated to researchers or academics, providing start-up training and mentoring. This prizeisdirected at acquiring services for researchersthat have obtainedresearchresults in the field of Water-Energy-Food (WEF) NEXUS towardsenablingcommercialization and the creation of spin-offs. It is not intended for direct employment, R&D costs, or services otherthan consulting/advisory services. The application willbe open until all vouchers are assigned. Read more to apply.
As part of its goals, the NEX-LABS project has established 2 NEXUS Driven Open Living Labs (NDOLLs) in Lebanon and Jordan respectively. The NDOLLsintend to establish an open spacethatbringstogetherscientists, industries, society, and business communities that are NEXUS-driven to collaborate, innovate and co-create the future of the Water, Energy and Food (WEF) -NEXUS sector.
The NDOLLs are meant for Entrepreneurs, Innovators, Researchers, Startups and SMEs, Students, Industry and privatesectorrepresentatives, Academia and Researchrepresentatives, Citizens, NGOs. By joining the NDOLLs participants can
- Find direct support, advice, and enabling network to develop and launchinnovativeproducts/services
- Collaborate and build synergies with WEF-NEXUS Stakeholdersworkingacross disciplines
- Contribute to the development of innovative and sustainable solutions to solve challenges faced in Jordan, Lebanon and MENA Region
- Empower the WEF-NEXUS local ecosystem by generating value throughout the innovation developmentprocess
The NDOLL in Lebanon islocated at Saint Joseph University Sciences &Technology Campus Dekwaneh in Beirutwhile the NDOLL in Jordan ishosted at iPARK’s Aqaba incubator.
NEX-LABS isalsodelighted to informthat 20 candidates, amongst 100 applicants, have been selected and awardedMediterraneanInnovatorsMobility Vouchers. The selectedindividualswillparticipate in twofact-finding missions, one in Italy (May 2023) and another in Spain (July 2023). The mobility voucher winnerswillvisit and meetwithdifferent clusters in Mediterraneanpartner countries that deal with Water, Energy, Food Nexus. This willallowthem to gain access to knowledge relevant to theirsector at both national and international levels. These missions present an opportunity for exchange of best practices and to identify cross-border cooperationopportunitiesamong experts in the field of Nexus, as well as the exploration of potentialstrategicpartnerships for present and future developments. The detailed program for the two missions in Italy and Spain isbeingfinalized. NEX-LABS islookingforward to seeing the results of thesefact-finding missions and continuing to support innovation in the Mediterranean.
ABOUT THE PARTNERSHIP
NEX-LABS projectincludes a partnership of 11 institutions (AutonomousUniversity of Barcelona (ES), Chamber of Commerce and Industry of the Center (TN), Royal Scientific Society- Aqaba Liaison Center (JO), BerytechFoundation (LB), INNOLABS SRL (IT), Academy of Scientific Research and Technology (EG), American University of Beirut (LB), Centre for promotional services to enterprises – Special Agency of Cagliari Chamber of Commerce (IT), Net7 Srl (IT), C.I.P Citizens In Power (CY), The JordanianHashemiteFund for HumanDevelopment /Princess BasmaCommunityDevelopment Centre Aqaba (JO)) from 7 different countries across the Mediterranean. Withreference B_A2.1._0124, NEX-LABS projectisfunded by the EU under the ENI CBC Med Programme. With a total budget of €3.450.984,97, the project has received a contribution of € 3.105.866,47 (90%).
ABOUT THE PROGRAMME
The 2014-2020 ENI CBC MediterraneanSea Basin Programme is a multilateral Cross-Border Cooperation (CBC) initiative funded by the EuropeanNeighbourhood Instrument (ENI). The Programme objective is to fosterfair, equitable and sustainableeconomic, social and territorial development, whichmayadvance cross-border integration and valorise participating countries’ territories and values. The following 13 countries participate in the Programme: Cyprus, Egypt, France, Greece, Israel, Italy, Jordan, Lebanon, Malta, Palestine, Portugal, Spain, Tunisia. The ManagingAuthority (MA) is the AutonomousRegion of Sardinia (Italy). Official Programme languages are Arabic, English and French. For more information, pleasevisit: www.enicbcmed.eu
Explore the NEX-LABS Agora: the digital hub to bekeptinformed about the Water, Energy and Food news and updates in the Mediterraneanhttps://nexlabsagora.eu/
For more information on the ENI CBC MED NEX-LABS project, pleasevisit
Visit and subscribe to ourYoutubechannel at: https://www.youtube.com/@nex-labsproject
For further information youcan contact the NEX-LABS project manager at:
Gustavo Pérez. Gustavo.firstname.lastname@example.org +34 93 581 49 38
This document has been producedwith the financial assistance of the European Union under the ENI CBC MediterraneanSea Basin Programme. The contents of this document are the sole responsibility of NEX-LABS partners and canunder no circumstancesberegarded as reflecting the position of the European Union or the Programme management structures.