Intensive high level training course in 

Innovation & Youth Entrepreneurship In The Mediterranean Agro-Food Sector

September 16 - November 23, 2019​

CIHEAM Bari, in collaboration with the Mediterranean Innovation Partnership (MIP), proposes to improve and expand its educational/training opportunities by launching a new high-level stand-alone specialized Training course with the aim of transferring knowledge and skills on the entrepreneurial culture to young innovators of the agro-food sector.


The focus of training is to empower the younger generation and improve their   employability opportunities by promoting their active involvement in the economic development of their regions. The course will enhance youth entrepreneurship and innovation skills, foster accountability through social entrepreneurship and innovation in order to make them able to:

  • enhance entrepreneurial culture;
  • contribute to the design, development and implementation of innovative projects (development of new products/services, adoption of new production processes, entry into new markets) within existing enterprises and organizations;
  • launch new business initiatives (start-ups), with a role in the development of the business idea and its implementation;
  • provide consultancy services to promote the introduction of business innovation processes and methods (innovation brokers).

Learning outcomes

On completion of the training course, the students will have acquired knowledge skills (implementation of participatory approaches, team building and management, start-up design and creation, support to innovation processes in agro-food enterprises in Med countries, social innovation in the agro-food sector); practical skills (design and implementation of a start-up project in the agro-food sector, organization and management of start-up companies, elaboration of innovation projects  (product/process) for agro-food enterprises based on needs analysis); personal skills (working in multidisciplinary teams, management of working teams, participatory approaches).

Course structure

The course will be organized in weekly units for a total duration of 10 weeks. A learning-by-doing approach will be adopted, and the training module will provide an excellent  balance between theory and practice.

The master course will balance face-to-face lectures, teamwork and practical work  oriented to the elaboration of innovative and entrepreneurial projects, from the design to the validation of innovative solutions, prototyping and market testing, using the technological facilities available at MEDAB. They will be developed throughout the course (entrepreneurship laboratory) and further explored and supported by the placement of participants at partner organizations for the preparation of a business project.

Meetups and events will be also organized to introduce the participants to new innovative start-ups and to successful companies in the agro-food sector, in order to foster inspiration through story-telling and the analysis of the best practices. The continuous relationship with enterprises and organizations (mentorship and technical visits), including start-ups (to stimulate peer to peer reviews), represents one of the main advantages of the course.

These entrepreneurial projects will be carried out through the establishment of teams who  work  side by side with external agro-food companies, experts (mentors) and the MEDAB coaches.

The proposed methodology has the objective to ensuring support to the various teams at any stage of the start-up creation, from ideation to validation, from design to start-up.

Lectures and workshops will be complemented by activities carried out by mentors and coaches, experts with different backgrounds, with the aim of  enlarging the vision and broadening prospects  of the students to encompass different specialized points of view, to inspire and guide them through a unique personal and customized experience, combining fun and knowledge.

The methodology will  be based on the most innovative techniques and tools that are used in the fields of service design, design thinking, trend-watching, lean startup, growth hacking and brand identity, which are capable of creating memorable and successful experiences.

Beneficiaries & Admission Procedures

Number of participants: 12 

The course will be mainly addressed to graduate students, young researchers, extension agents, civil servants, professionals in agriculture and rural development from the Mediterranean region – Albania, Algeria, Egypt, Italy, Lebanon, Libya, Morocco, Palestine, Tunisia, Turkey, – and Sub-Saharan countries – Ethiopia, Kenya, Eritrea.

Participants will be selected between April and May 2019. They must have the right profile and motivation to ensure that the learning outcomes are successfully achieved.

After a pre-selection of candidates in the countries of origin upon nomination by the relevant organizations,  the final selection will be made in April-May 2019 by CIHEAM Bari staff through interviews by  Conference Call.

Language Requirements

A good working knowledge of English is required.

Course program