Frequently asked questions

Everything you need to know about the World Incubation Summit 2023

What is the World Incubation Summit 2023 (WIS23)?

The World Incubation Summit 2023 - Building Bridges toward Excellence is a 4-day international conference that invites an exclusive group of incubators and accelerators from across the globe to share insights, form collaborative partnerships, and find long-term solutions and partners to contribute to the excellence of their organizations. This year’s edition also invites a small group of international corporates, government entities, and innovation agencies seeking opportunities to collaborate with the global business incubation community. Also new this year is a summit-within-a-summit when the entire WIS23 delegation is invited to visit Antwerp for the ITF World conference on deep tech.

When and where is the World Incubation Summit 2023?

14-17 May 2023
Ghent, Belgium

Why is WIS23 in Ghent, Belgium?

Ghent is the European capital of technology, where you can find an eclectic community with intricate synergies and a drive for innovation. Most of the startups in Belgium are located in the Ghent region, with over 670 new companies located here in 2021, and 2 out of 4 unicorns came up through the local ecosystem. Ghent also has the largest student population in Flanders, with more than 84,000 students.

Who are our hosts, imec and imec.istart?

At imec, colleagues come from every corner of the world. Over 5,000 passionate colleagues, from more than 90 nationalities, work at the headquarters in Leuven (Belgium) and various sites worldwide. We take on the challenges of tomorrow and the day after, together! As one of the world’s largest and most prominent R&D players in microchip technology and digital innovation, imec works on the technology that is 5 to 10 years ahead of what exists today. 
The imec.istart acceleration program offers a broad range of services such as pre-seed funding, personal coaching and mentoring, access to technology and working facilities, access to a broad (inter)national network of partners and investors, and more. 
Since its launch in 2011, imec.istart has helped more than 300 tech startups in diverse fields to develop into sustainable ventures.
In the UBI Global World Rankings 2019-2020, imec.istart was ranked 1st in the European ‘Top University Business Accelerators' by UBI Global. 
Announced during WIS23 Part 1, imec.istart was ranked among the top 3 worldwide. Who will rank #1 for 2021-2022? UBI Global will announce it to the world during WIS23!

Why do business incubators and accelerators need more information about the semiconductor industry?

The world is short of semiconductors. Semiconductors are at the center of strong geostrategic interests, and at the core of the global technological race. Superpowers are keen to secure their supply of the most advanced chips as they are well aware that it will condition their capacity to act (militarily, economically, industrially) and drive digital transformation.

Chips are a strategic component of any industrial chain. The race for the most advanced chips is a race about technological and industrial leadership.

  • The US is now discussing a massive investment under the American Chips Act designed to finance the creation of an American research center and to help open up advanced production factories. The objective is clear: to increase the resilience of US semiconductor supply chains.

  • Taiwan is positioning itself to ensure its primacy in semiconductor manufacturing.

  • China is trying to close the technological gap as it is constrained by export control rules to avoid technological transfers.

Semiconductor innovation and advancement is an issue that can be solved by startups enrolled in business incubators and accelerators! It’s important to be informed about global initiatives in this area, which is why the WIS23 agenda includes a full day at ITF.

Who is invited to WIS23?

Incubators and Accelerators

  • Managers from incubator and accelerator organizations part of the UBI Global Network

  • Participants and top-ranked programs from the World Benchmark Study 2021-2022


  • Decision makers with corporate innovation & startup strategy focus

Innovation Agencies

  • Supporters of innovation and economic growth through business incubation

How do I register my interest to attend the World Incubation Summit 2023?

Please apply to attend by clicking on the Apply button at the top righthand corner of this website. You will receive a confirmation message. An invitation letter and further details to register will arrive later by email if your application is approved.

Where can I find out about the speakers and agenda of the World Incubation Summit 2023?

Information on the agenda, speakers, and other points of interest are constantly updated here on the main conference website, You can also follow our UBI Global blog, sign up for our newsletter, or check the Home page, Events page, or Articles on the Global Innovation Studios portal.

How can I get involved as a speaker, nominate a speaker I think would be valuable for the attendees, or sponsor an event at the World Incubation Summit? 

To nominate your dream speaker, see the Agenda web page on the Summit website and follow all guidelines to submit your nomination. You are also welcome to contact our team directly at to explore opportunities for sponsorship and connecting with the global innovation community during the Summit.

Will the World Rankings 2021-2022 #1s still be recognized during the World Incubation Summit 2023?

One of the highlights of the World Incubation Summit is the gala dinner that includes recognition and awards to the top benchmarked programs from WBS2122. Though Part 1 announced the Top Lists and Top Challengers, the #1s won’t be announced until we’re all in the same room at the Gala dinner in Ghent during the Summit. Download the World Rankings Report 2021-2022 v. 1 from our website here.

Is there a cost to attend the World Incubation Summit and what does it include?

Yes, there is a charge to register to attend the WIS23, which covers the costs incurred to hold the event. The registration fee includes access to all sessions and events. It does not include travel, accommodation, or any other expenses related to attending.

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