Connect & Experience

7-12 October, 2023
Innovation ecosystem development training for European ecosystem leaders. A transformative journey and the chance to join an exclusive community of like-minded peers.

Training Programme for European Innovation Ecosystem Leaders

We invite you to apply to a one-of-a-kind, competitive programme and become part of an exclusive European-Israeli active innovation community. Connect & Experience is an interactive platform for peer-learning and collaboration, aimed at enhancing start-up growth and open innovation in your ecosystem.

Your journey starts here -  join an exclusive pan-European and Israeli network of ecosystem leaders

What is Connect & Experience?

1. Intensive in-person professional training in Israel (7-12 October 2023)

2. Follow up conference in Europe - the C&E Playground

3. Full access to the C&E innovation community network

Why Apply?

A leading ecosystem building programme with a high caliber of participants and expert facilitators.

Gain tools to become a leader in your field by. learning best practices of ecosystem management, including community building, tech tools, network leveraging and more.

Experience the start-up journey. and learn effective tools to support it, developed exclusively for the 2023 cohort.

Get immersed and build sustainable partnerships in one of the most innovative countries in the world.

Become a part of an exclusive community network of strategic players in ecosystem building, get ongoing support, access to events and matchmaking from the EIT Hub Israel.


Application Opens

Application Closes




Follow up conference - the European "Playground"


The full cost of the programme is 4.000 EUR, however EIT Hub Israel can offer partial funding of the programmes and/or Travel & Accommodation reimbursement based on the following categories:

Participant Category
Eligible KIC’s
Eligibility for Programme Funding
Eligibility for Travel and Accommodation Reimbursement
KIC Partners
6 KIC’s: EIT Health, EIT Climate- KIC, EIT Manufacturing, EIT Digital, EIT Food and EIT Culture & Creativity.
Fully funded
Reimbursement up to €1,500 per participant per module
KIC Staff
6 KIC’s: EIT Health, EIT Climate- KIC, EIT Manufacturing, EIT Digital, EIT Food and EIT Culture & Creativity.
Fully funded
Financed by the KIC’s own resources
Partner/Staff from other KIC’s
EIT InnoEnergy, EIT Raw Materials and EIT Urban Mobility
75% Funded; Price: €1.000
Financed by participant’s own resources
Ecosystem Manager (Non EIT)
Any individual professional can apply.
50% Funded; Price: €2.000
Financed by participant’s own resources

Draft Agenda for the Connect & Experience Bootcamp in Israel

*The below agenda is subject to change

Programme outcomes

Organic EU-IL follow up activities, initiated by the participants themselves

Mindset shift and openness to new ideas

Joint hackathons, demo days and webinars

98% overall satisfaction rate

Active community engagement & network expansion



Neil Walmsley

“Having worked mostly with the European innovation ecosystem, this program was an excellent opportunity to understand the world of Silicon Valley, the differences in approaches and how to effectively work with the Silicon Valley innovation community and investors. We had the opportunity to visit a range of different accelerators, innovation hubs and investors, getting a chance to understand their approaches and what they are looking for when working with innovators. It was a great opportunity to both develop a deeper understanding of the different cultures and build networks with counterparts in California. This has proven immensely valuable to me and my organisation.”
Dóra Marosvölgyi

Dóra Marosvölgyi

“Connect and Experience in Silicon Valley, I attended in 2019 with fellow European innovation leaders, proved transformative as it enabled us to engage with influential stakeholders from Plug and Play, Berkley Skydeck, New Energy Nexus, among others, fostering a profound comprehension of Silicon Valley’s driving forces as a leading start-up support scene and sparking promising new collaborations.”

Adi Barel

“Connect & Experience Silicon Valley expended my network and provided me with the relevant connections and tools to work with the top ecosystem in the world. It’s been 4 years since I’ve participated, and I still utilize these connections every day.”
Anca del Rio

Anca del Rio

“Great learning experience from all standpoints: venture & business, investment, cultural shifts, ecosystem development. Made very good connections and got a deep dive in the innovation ecosystem; could not have been better!”
Bram Pauwels

Bram Pauwels

Connect & Experience provided me with the unique opportunity to establish long lasting connections with global peers and experts, enabling me to take my work at EBN to the next level, and enhance our impact in the start up and innovation space”

Meet the Connect & Experience Team

Adi Barel

Director EIT Global Outreach


Innovation & Business Creation Manager

Tal Caspi

Operations & Project Manager
EIT Headshots-3585 (1)


Yes, participation physically in Israel is required, and it is the core Connect & Experience event that provides you with professional training, and builds the community. You will have the chance to travel round the country, meet Israeli peers and learn from one if the world’s leading innovation ecosystems.

The cohort will be comprised of ecosystem leaders from all over Europe that were carefully selected to join the programme. You will meet peers and ecosystem leaders from Israel, top speakers and lecturers on a number of different topics, executives from global companies active in Israel, and many more.

The programme encompasses a wide variety of subjects, including an overview of the Israeli ecosystem and meetings with leading figures from the industry. You will have the chance to get your hands ‘dirty’ and delve into an ecosystem building workshop, learn the dos and don’ts of branding, visit academia and governmental offices, meet with VCs, and become inspired by the many opportunities that will expose themselves.

This depends on a financial category that varies from participant to participant. Check out the finance section for more information.

Past participants have established long standing collaborations with both experts they met in Israel and members of the cohort. You can expect to be left with a change of mindset that will enable you to approach your day to day activities with a new found sense of purpose, as well as a tangible toolkit to establish the best practices you were exposed to. The Connect & Experience community is extremely active with joint ventures taking place on a weekly basis, you can expect to expand your network and be part of a supportive and professional group of people.

The Israeli ecosystem renowned as the ‘Start-up Nation’, has the highest number of start-ups per capita in the world. The country is known for its unique sense of national community, sharing knowledge and information and working together to support start-ups. The country’s entrepreneurs are considered great mentors, many of them are over 30 years old and have founded at least one company. Considered broadminded and fearless, they are known as high risk takers and use failures as motivation.

Do you have any questions? Get in touch with us at


  • This full stack 5-day immersion into the Israeli ecosystem goes beyond the usual introductions, and drills down to the key drivers of ecosystem building. Key drivers include government funding schemes, academia and startups, community builders, corporates and more.  This deep dive is designed to provide a genuine insight into what could be considered one of the most fascinating ecosystems in the world, all while providing the highest practical value and impact on participants.
  • The programme is highlighted by the brand names of the Israeli ecosystem who will share their experience and describe their role in making Israel the innovation success it is today.  The programme will leverage existing know-how and best practices, will provide a broad access to mentors, hands-on training and tools to commercialize ideas, research and IP to better support your start-ups. It will also focus on how to avoid common pitfalls of ecosystem building and how to build a sustainable system in the process.

  • The content will be delivered as a Mini-Conference – in addition to presentations by key Israeli players, participants will be expected to present their own challenges and initiatives in their home ecosystem. This knowledge-sharing amongst global peers will provide added value and enhance the overall experience.


The Playground

  • The annual highlight of the C&E community network – the Playground is a
    professional follow up conference taking place at a different location in
    Europe each year, that offers practical tools and strategies. The playground
    brings together professionals from all across Europe and Israel and
    provides a platform to develop and manage innovation communities and
    start-up support systems.
  • Members will be offered the opportunity to design and co-facilitate
    content and workshops with an Israeli/European peer who has experience
    in connecting the public and private sector, as well as start-ups and
    corporate players. As such, the playground can be used as a testbed for
    new ideas and initiatives, receiving real time feedback and potential
    collaborations from leading experts in the field.

Full access to the community network

Connect & Experience offers more than professional training. The C&E network is an active EU-IL online and offline community offering access to opportunities, curated content, matchmaking, soft landing services and support. The expansive network that grows from year to year offers a space for community builders from Israel and Europe to interact, share best practices and collaborate, with the common goal of enhancing your start-up community.


EIT KIC Partners and KIC cooperating entities under the EIT Regional Innovation Scheme (RIS) from the 5 KIC’s involved in the Israel Hub – EIT Health, EIT Climate- KIC, EIT Urban Mobility, EIT Manufacturing and EIT Food.

EIT KIC Staff – from 5 KIC’s involved in the Israel Hub- EIT Health, EIT Climate- KIC, EIT Urban Mobility, EIT Manufacturing and EIT Food.

Partner/staff from other KIC’s – EIT InnoEnergy, EIT Digital and EIT RawMaterials

Ecosystem Managers, non-EIT Partners

All 8 KIC’s are invited to apply, however funding will be offered to the 5 KIC’s active in the Israeli Hub: EIT Climate-KIC, EIT Health, EIT Urban Mobility, EIT Food and EIT Manufacturing. See more in the finance section. 


Full access to the community network

Connect & Experience offers more than training. The C&E community network is an active EU online and offline community offering easy access to opportunities, curated content, matchmaking, soft landing services, and support. The community provides a space for community builders from Europe and Horizon Europe associated countries to interact, share best practices, and collaborate to enhance your startup community.

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*For the best experience, we highly recommend reading the report on your desktop and not your mobile.

Access to Healthcare

The Health not The Death is a fundamental human right. A healthy population is not to be seen as human and social capital, an input, or by-product, towards economic growth. Alongside a healthy and sustainable environment, a solidarity, a healthy population must be the ultimate goal especially nowadays in helping Ukrainian migrants with cancer and their families.

Solidarity in health is a cornerstone of EU health policy. There are wide disparities in many health outcomes across the region and those outcomes. The access rules dramatically affect healthcare systems which are at the forefront of the migrant way, the people who are searching for help and the way how we could enhance and support their healthier and wellbeing status.

In order to ensure their access to care and continued cure in need, the probability of receiving a timely diagnosis and of surviving differs greatly from country to country where they are now. There is lack of information, help and inequalities in access. People need help in navigating cancer knowledge, diagnostics, secondary monitoring and prevention, way of treatments, and care.

Shifting our mindset, supporting healthcare connectivity, removing inequalities overall across Europe is our mission and even more now in a time of crisis, helping the Ukrainian people dealing with cancer is a good place to begin this transformative revolution.

1) Whether we have a chance to foster more holistic and integrated approaches to receive information and care, by supporting coordination and maximising an enabling and health-enhancing effect of care across services from different countries?

2) Whether actions should address the social determinants of health, the countries where they are now, the health need which they have, the social and language barriers are the conditions which have to be taken into consideration in a coordinated manner?

How might we improve patients and /or people who seek healthcare support, access to healthcare services at an EU & the Member States Healthcare systems level? Especially in a time of crisis in Europe.

How might we support refugees fleeing from their countries by navigating them to medical centres to receive best available care?  


Predictive Treatment

Precision medicine aims to personalise care for every individual. Nongenomic and genomic determinants, combined with information from patient symptoms, clinical history, and lifestyle (nutrition, physical activity, stress etc.), can facilitate personalised diagnosis and prognostics. Yet this goal requires access to massive amounts of data which may come from different structured and unstructured sources; these can be our medical records, laboratory testing, a range of medical devices as well as from the patient himself. AI & ML can combine input from these multiple sources, analyse them and identify biomarkers that can support health professionals make more informed decisions. The convergence of precision medicine with the advanced AI capabilities will improve the ability to personalise care – improve diagnosis, risk prediction as well as therapy planning.  

HCPs want to better predict treatment response, given uncertainty around which treatment to prescribe to which patient and when to prescribe. How do we risk assess the patients, match them with the right treatment (personalised). How can we transform the wealth of data and link it to the predictive nature of how the patient will respond?


Patient Journey Navigation

Being diagnosed with cancer is overwhelming and comes as a blow. Patients may feel on a roller coaster of emotions—they are scared, lost & confused not knowing what to expect, who to refer to, what to do and how to tell their loved ones.  They directly refer to “Dr. Google” to look for information about their disease, possible treatments, QoL strategies with the aim to have better understanding of their disease and learn how to better cope with their disease & treatment, yet information is not always valid, accessible, nor personalised or tailored to the patient’s status and needs therefore left with huge amounts of non-relevant information. Coming to the doctor, the physician’s time is limited and mostly focusing on the physical aspects of the disease & treatment, not leaving much time to ask questions nor discuss more holistic aspects of the disease such as emotional, psychological, social aspects. The patient (& caregiver in many cases) leaves the room with unanswered questions, doesn’t remember much of what has been said, and feels he is not heard, nor seen as a whole.

The need for navigating this journey along the emotional psychological stress is overwhelming & patients and their caregivers look for support (case manager/companion/partner) to help manage their disease holistically – starting from having clarity around their disease and treatment by having access to reliable and personalised information during their journey as well as having an integrated holistic care system , supporting them and their loved ones to navigate through the different aspects of their disease – medical, emotional, logistical, psychological, social, rights.

How can we support patients to navigate through the complexity of their disease and treatment ensuring they have validated holistic information about their disease journey & treatment and be empowered to  effectively manage their care 


Peer-to-Peer Medical Exchange

As medical events pivoted from conference centres and meeting rooms to the virtual settings, learning opportunities continue. Lectures and presentations are translated to the new digital world, yet the ability to connect and network is relatively lost. Peer interaction is essential not only for information exchange but to share practical insights, allows consultation & in-person experience cross country and across borders leading to better disease management.

This peer-based learning/ consultation is highly valued amongst practising clinicians and was generally achieved when HCPs and KOLs met their peers in national & Intl conferences, group debates, advisory boards and even during quick corridor conversations. Attempting to replicate these in-person experiences into the digital space creates challenges and are not effective nor impactful as face-to-face engagements. 

How might we improve HCP medical exchange enabling physicians to easily communicate, consult, exchange opinions leveraging individual experts & centres of excellence knowledge, experiences, and practices?

How can we leverage the technological expertise to allow HCPs to connect with leading experts across countries to get advice / counselling for their cases?


Application for 2022Calling2Scale is closed.
Interested in participating in the next cohort?