As the venue for Laudato Si’ Challenge, the accelerator inspired by the principles of the encyclical Laudato Si’ by Pope Francis, Stephen Forte, American venture capitalist of the Fresco Capital Fund, and Paul Orlando, a professor at the University of Southern California and director of the USC incubator, have chosen LUISS ENLABS, the largest hub of innovation and home to over 50 digital startups in the heart of Rome.
For Stephen Forte “There aren’t very many true innovators around anymore, so when we’ve spotted LUISS ENLABS and see what an amazing job they do with startups, we knew there was no better match in Rome”.
From mid-July to mid-September the 12 “for-profit and mission-driven” startups, from Italy and abroad, will work within the co-working of Termini, followed by international mentors who will also hold Seminars on various focuses, free and open to the entire ecosystem of LUISS ENLABS.
The startup missions are the same on the United Nations agenda: propose the best solutions for energy, food, water, urban environment and human potential. Businesses that will be able to propose a scalable, sustainable, socially committed and profitable project will be invited to the Demo Day in December at the Vatican to present their solutions to a crowd of potential investors.
To support the project, His Eminence Cardinal Peter Turkson, Prefect of the Dicastery for the Promotion of Integral Development in the Vatican, will take care of the startups during the acceleration period and will make sure they remain in line with the mission of the program. Asked about the involvement of Cardinal Eminence Turkson, Director Forte said: “Over the years we have hosted more than 500 companies in four accelerators, which has allowed us to develop a set of skills that we can make available to young people; bt what about the value of the mission? For that we needed a real guide, a profound and significant personality, hence the choice of Cardinal Peter Turkson”.