The Call for BEST (Business Exchange and Student Training) 2019, the bilateral program between the United States and Italy that aims to train tomorrow’s Corporate Innovation Leaders and develop the Italian innovation ecosystem, is now live at

Promoted by the Embassy of the United States of America to Italy, the Fulbright Commission, Invitalia and the BEST Steering Committee, coordinated by Mind the Bridge with the media partnership by RDS 100% Grandi Successi, BEST provides 6 months of activities in Silicon Valley with courses, traineeships and 1: 1 modules with top notch personalities of the local ecosystem. The goal is learning the best practices of the Silicon Valley and then contribute to the Italian economic growth and technological development.

All Italian citizens under 35 with a 3-year degree, Master’s Degree, Specialized Degree (LS), Bachelor’s or PhD, attending a PhD or courses in Art, Fashion and Design, can submit their application by March 31, 2019.

“In these years, BEST scholarships have successfully supported more than a hundred young Italians in their educational training in management – said Fernando Napolitano, President and CEO, IB&II – This program, which we have been carrying forward for 11 years, will keep on providing the winners with the opportunity to get in touch with the most developed innovation ecosystem in the world, and, when they return to Italy, to interact with the best Italian companies in search of innovation”.

The grants offer up to $ 3,000 a month to cover for food, accommodation and transport and up to 1,500 euro of flat-rate reimbursement for travel expenses and VISA entry to the United States.

The 6 months of activity, coordinated by Mind the Bridge, include:

1 month of courses on lean methodology and open innovation, with workshops held by local entrepreneurs and professionals and teachers of the most prestigious California universities, including Stanford and UC Berkeley.

5 months of part-time training in a Silicon Valley tech, startup, accelerator or Venture Capital company.

a 1:1 weekly session: about 2 hours with a leading figure in the local innovation environment.

“Regardless of the sector, innovation today comes to companies more and more from outside and from the collaboration with startups – commented Marco Marinucci, CEO and founder of Mind the Bridge – Training talented young people in Silicon Valley and transforming them into open innovation managers represents an opportunity for growth that our country and our companies can not miss.”

By the end of May, the Fulbright Commission will announce the winners who will leave for San Francisco in early September.