Guidelines and Rules

WHAT are we looking for?

MITdesignX Venice seeks diverse, interdisciplinary teams working on challenging ideas to design solutions and launch a real venture based in Venice. We are looking for ideas(*) or early stage startups dedicated to solving problems experienced in Venice as well as other coastal and historical cities, along these themes:

  • Art and Architecture: sustainability, maintenance, and preservation

  • Tourism of the future: fair accommodations and sustainable mobility

  • Water, Energy and Environment

  • Smart tools for cities and citizens

(*) At MITdesignX Venice, Intellectual Property (IP) is considered the property of the individuals and/or teams. MIT and SerenDPT will not stake IP or patent claims to new ideas developed at MITdesignX Venice.

WHO are we looking for?

EVERYONE is invited to submit an application, whether students, professionals, or community members of all backgrounds.

Teams should be composed of at least 2 people and not more than 5.

One person cannot apply as a single individual and cannot apply as a member of more than one team.

Ideal candidates are ideas with a connection to Venice, or to the problems the city experiences.

HOW can you participate?

Applications can be submitted online (in English) at any time from May 28 until July 17, 2022.

We encourage individuals and teams to attend preparatory events that are programmed before the submission deadline (see calendar here).

  • Attendance in the preparatory events is not mandatory.

  • Teams can submit an application without attending any preliminary event.

  • Participation in the preliminary events helps teams to hone their idea and make a better submission

Up to 10 top ideas will be selected to participate in the Fall program.


  • Anyone can be a member of a team, regardless of age (over 18), origin or background.

  • Participants are required to speak a good level of English. The entire program (Bootcamp, DesignX sessions and pitch out) will be held in English.

If selected for the fall program, in-person attendance by at least 50% of the team is mandatory to receive funding.

Selection & Evaluation Criteria

Applications go through a selection process that reviews ideas based on

  • human and social impact

  • feasibility

  • uniqueness

  • market fit and scalability

  • team composition, diversity and skillset

  • preference will be given to teams with one or more members from Venice

  • secondary preference is accorded to teams with members from the Veneto.

After the final submission deadline applicant teams might be individually contacted to help clarify information from the application itself.

Up to 10 teams are selected

Funding and Support

Up to € 5,000 will be granted to participating teams thanks to support from Fondazione di Venezia. The grant is awarded to fund initial team expenses needed to develop the idea, including, but not limited to:

  • data collection

  • database access

  • incorporation and legal costs

  • travel costs associated with the seminars or with meeting partners or customers

  • programming

  • marketing

  • graphics or other professional services

  • product development.

MITdesignX Venice reserves all rights to make decisions on acceptable use of funds. All expenses and procurement must be acceptable to MITdesignX Venice.

SerenDPT provides a workspace for the selected teams during the entire program and will offer a facilitated permanence inside the incubator after the end of the program.

Funding Rules

Only teams will receive funding (not individuals). The grant is allocated to the venture, not to individual team members. Individuals may receive payments based on reimbursements of costs approved for the team. If changes are made to a team’s composition, the grant follows the team accepted into the program and not the individual team members.

Funding cannot be split. Only the original idea and team composition selected by MITdesignX will be eligible for the program and funding unless (a) a team member voluntarily quits the team and the remaining members continue or (b) an acceptable pivot by members of the remaining team continues with the program.