All About Ghent - The Place to be for WIS23!

Ghent, Belgium, is a city rich in history and culture, and it is quickly becoming a hub for innovation and technology.

Located in the Flemish Region of Belgium, Ghent has a population of over 260,000 people and is the third-largest city in Belgium.

The city's history dates back to the Middle Ages when it was a major center for textile production and trade. The city's prosperity led to the construction of numerous architectural landmarks such as the Castle of the Counts, Saint Bavo Cathedral, and the Belfry Tower. Today, visitors can explore these historical sites and experience the city's rich past.

But Ghent is not just a city frozen in time.

The city has a vibrant cultural scene, with numerous museums, galleries, and festivals. The Ghent Light Festival, held every three years, transforms the city's historic buildings and streets with dazzling light displays. The Museum of Fine Arts and the Design Museum Ghent showcase the city's artistic achievements, while the Ghent Festival "Gentse feesten", held annually in July, celebrates the city's diverse cultures with live music, street theater, and food.

Ghent's rich cultural and historical heritage has also helped it to become a leading center for innovation and technology. The city is home to numerous research centers, incubators, and startups, focusing on fields such as biotechnology, clean energy, and digital innovation. Ghent's thriving startup ecosystem is supported by organizations such as Startup Ghent, which provides mentorship, networking, and resources to help entrepreneurs succeed.

Included in this is our WIS23 host, imec and imec.istart.

 A global organization with over 5,000 passionate colleagues from more than 90 nationalities working at its headquarters in Leuven (Belgium) and various sites worldwide. imec takes on the challenges of tomorrow and the day after, together!

This May 14-17, Ghent will host the World Incubation Summit 2023, bringing together business incubator and accelerator experts from over 40 countries to share best practices and ideas for supporting and growing startups. WIS23, organized by UBI Global and hosted by imec and imec.istart will feature panel discussions, workshops, keynote speakers, insights from the World Benchmark Study 2021-2022, an exciting gala dinner and the UBI Awards to top-performing incubators and accelerators, and networking opportunities, providing attendees with valuable insights into the latest trends and developments in entrepreneurship.

Visitors to Ghent can explore its architectural landmarks, museums, and festivals while experiencing its vibrant startup ecosystem. The World Incubation Summit 2023 will provide an opportunity for incubators and accelerators to connect, network,  and gain valuable insights into the latest trends and developments in entrepreneurship. If you want to experience the best of history and witness the future of entrepreneurship, Ghent is worth a visit. 

Read the Top 10 Things to Do in Ghent and download the guide before your visit for WIS23!



Top Ranked Award

Livestream Part 1
World Rankings
24 January 2023

Anyone is welcome to register to attend Part 1, a livestream event announcing the UBI Global World Rankings of Business Incubators & Accelerators 2021-2022. Streaming live with imec and imec.istart
from Ghent, Belgium



In-person Part 2
Networking & Gala
14-17 May 2023

Part 2 is an invitation only, in-person, 4-day event focused on networking, interactive learning, and featuring a gala evening, inspiring speakers, and much more! Hosted by imec and imec.istart in Ghent, Belgium



Two great events
creating impactful collaborations

WIS Part 1 is free online and open to anyone interested in the global innovation ecosystem! WIS Part 2 is a physical event focused on business incubators and accelerators making outstanding contributions to the global innovation ecosystem


imec and imec.istart partner with UBI Global and Global Inovation Studios to announce the World Ranking of Business Incubators and Accelerators 2021-2022

“Impact innovation emerges anywhere around the globe. By connecting to other relevant innovation ecosystems, we can keep up with the fast-paced innovation and support our startups and partners in keeping a global perspective. UBI Global is a pivotal player in building bridges to these global innovation ecosystems, and we are proud to bring these ecosystems together in Belgium at WIS23. Welcome to Ghent!”

-Sven De Cleyn
imec.istart Program Director

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