Rural Hub

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= a network + a place: "project that I’ve been following from the inception: with the mission of incubating rural innovations and researching human connections between food, resilience and agriculture".



As a network

"Rural Hub is the rhizome of a network of researchers, activists, scholars, and managers interested in identifying new models of economic development. All those people are motivated to find new solutions to the needs (both social and market-related) of the new rural enterprises.

It was founded as a research union, in order to facilitate the connection between new and innovative enterprises, investors and trade associations. This “response” to the lack of business incubators and service providers could really entail a renewal of the business, for a sustainable development of the agri-food industry."

As a space

Rural Hub is the first Italian hacker space allowing connection and sharing among people, ideas, technologies and projects concerning social innovation projects applied to the rural world.

Rural Hub is:

  • A co-living and co-working space;
  • A study center leading a permanent research on social innovation applied to rural;
  • Local and global venue of events;
  • An incubator carrying on Mentoring e Project Financing for Rural Start-ups:
  • Connector between innovators and rural change-makers;
  • A laboratory, concerned with new business and communitarian realities, both formal and informal, involving agri-food;
  • A task force for projects of activation of rural communities;


RuralHub as a learning platform

Simone Cicero:

"RuralHub is itself a Platform: indeed we originally co-designed RuralHub vision in 2013 thanks to a Platform Design Session and it’s incredible to see how the original vision of the project unfolded through successes, uncertainties, challenges and changes, still staying substantially attached to the originally co-developed vision.

But for as much difference and peculiarities you can find in RuralHub’s story, it faces the same key challenge that every other platform faces at today: big or small, global or local, all platforms need to encourage, support and facilitate learning to eventually thrive.

In the case of RuralHub — definitively a representative model for many other incubation networks— and in many other cases, nurturing a learning process that serves the ecosystem is also the best way to respond to growth challenges. Such a learning context would indeed ensure that the peers that are part of the larger pool of contributors (typically a larger group than founders and employees), can constantly improve their performances thanks to the platform and ultimately challenge themselves towards new and ambitious objectives that, at the same time, stretch the platform edges towards higher value and new opportunities." (