For those who love pasta and vino plus all the yummy things that Italy is known for, Bologna will give it to you in spades. Gritty and yet elegant, it is a city splashed with cash, historical icons and student filled streets where arched colonnades hide sophisticated cafes and sprawling plazas are dotted with graffiti. The historical capital of the Emilia-Romagna region sitting in the north of Italy is high-tech and yet it retains all of its flavors from being the birthplace of "ragu" (bolognese sauce) to being home to a university that was founded in 1088. Majestic heart-rending operas are performed and some of the nation's finest restaurants fill up with suave fashionistas. Throw into this eclectic mix coworking venues and you have the perfect place to hatch your plans for a startup.
Bologna has been a major urban hub for centuries with its cosmopolitan flair, famous churches, towers and lengthy porticoes. With a population of about 1 million people, it was declared the European capital of culture in 2000 and in 2006 given the title of a "city of music" by UNESCO. It is the industrial, financial, transport and agriculture heart with many food, electronic and mechanical companies having their headquarters in the city. One of the wealthiest cities in the whole of Italy, it is ranked as 1 of the top cities to live in.
Italians have creative culture in their blood, from food to fashion, design to wine and there are plenty of innovative tech savvy souls lingering over espressos. Major tech players such as IBM and Apple are opening up new tech hubs alluding to the fact that there is loads of potential in the Italian market. The government is instigating new initiatives to make it easier for startups to "start up" in light of the fact that it has always had a reputation for being bureaucracy-heavy.
Bologna may not be the tech hub on a par with Turin, Milan or Rome, but it does have its locals who have no desire to move from their beautiful home city, plus there are the meandering globetrotters with laptops in their backpacks that linger longer than they should in this stunning area. Coworking venues are giving them the space to mingle, to connect and to collaborate in one of the most beautiful cities Italy has to offer.
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