We Make Future presents its 2024 edition

After registering over 60,000 attendees from 89 countries, hosting more than 670 exhibitors, over 1,000 speakers, and engaging over 3,000 startups, investors, and open innovation stakeholders in 2023, We Make Future is arriving in Bologna, Italy, for the first time.

From the heart of Europe in Brussels, WMF - We Make Future, the International Trade Fair and Festival on Innovation encompassing Digital, AI, and Tech, unveiled its 2024 edition to a global audience. The event is set to take place from 13th to 15th June at BolognaFiere, Italy.

Spanning three days, the event will feature over 100 activities and boasts a distinctive format that blends an Expo, Education sessions, B2B Meetings, Concerts, and a Future Show. This makes it a must-attend gathering for all stakeholders in the innovation sector and for those eager to discover opportunities and forge collaborations with companies, startups, professionals, institutions, and NGOs from across the globe.

“WMF is not simply an event: it is a platform that we created to connect knowledge, creativities, and skills from the entire world,” said Cosmano Lombardo, CEO and Founder of Search On Media Group and creator of the WMF. “We are thrilled to introduce the upcoming edition of WMF, showcasing the opportunities for international companies and changemakers. With the steadfast support of our esteemed partners already on board and set to join us in Bologna next June, WMF is poised to fulfil its core mission: connecting global excellence.

“From renowned brands to impassioned activists, from esteemed institutions to visionary investors and budding startups, from innovative networks to impactful NGOs, WMF serves as a catalyst for positive improvement on a global scale.

“We extend a warm invitation to an even broader international audience, transforming the event into a dynamic nexus for both meetings and business endeavours.”

The event represents not only opportunities for education and global discussion, but also business opportunities, thanks to the presence of hundreds of exhibitors, companies, market players, startups, and international pavilions in the Expo Area: the presence of companies and representatives from Germany, Bulgaria, Latvia, Switzerland, Luxembourg, Greece, Serbia, Croatia, Poland, Egypt, Morocco, Brazil, the Dominican Republic, Central America, Africa, and many other countries has already been confirmed.

Thanks to collaboration with ITA (the Italian Trade Agency), WMF will also host a delegation of investors, VCs, CVCs, and national funds from, among others, Qatar, Bahrain, the United Arab Emirates, Israel, the United Kingdom, France, Sweden, Finland, and Portugal.

Several distinguished guests, who will also attend the forthcoming edition of WMF in Bologna, engaged in the press conference organised with the support of ITA (Italian Trade Agency) and MFAIC (The Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation). Among them also  Sabrina Ricci, AI Ecosystem Manager at ESA Φ-lab,  Riccardo Masucci, Director of Security and Technology Policy at Intel, Brando Benifei, Member of the European Parliament and rapporteur for the AI Act, Boyko Tavok from BSMEPA (Bulgarian Small and Medium Enterprise Promoting Agency), Francesca Barisani, Outreach and Stakeholders Manager at EIT Deep Tech Talent Initiative, Paula Kant, Head of Investment Promotion at InvestHK, Guido Scorza, Member of the Italian Data Protection Authority and Nestor Maslej from Stanford University, Research Manager at the Institute for Human-Centred Artificial Intelligence who has announced that the AI Index Report 2024 is the most comprehensive edition so far and will include new features, such as a focus on AI training costs, the responsible AI training landscape, and AI's engagement in science and medicine.

During the press conference Maslej said: “The AI Index is excited to be participating at the upcoming WMF festival in June. The Index strongly believes in the importance of bringing together diverse stakeholders, like those in industry, academic and civil society, all in one space, for the purposes of discussing the ways in which transformative technologies like AI ought to be managed. The WMF is a great opportunity to further such discussions and we are delighted to be participating.”

Global expertise and experiences: the world meets at WMF

As a platform serving both society and business and bridging the entire world, WMF annually convenes leading figures, and changemakers in the AI & Digital-Tech, major international players, startups, scale-ups, investors, institutions, universities, and non-profit organisations. The vision of WMF entails the integration of global expertise and experiences, with a focus on fostering innovative solutions to address important matters such as Artificial Intelligence and the increasing importance of open innovation, but also contemporary issues such as sustainability, climate change and human rights. 

WMF pursues these important goals through a broad and diverse program, including events and training initiatives, business opportunities, as well as shows and entertainment. Also scheduled this year are, in fact, vertical events to explore the main themes of innovation comprehensively, including the AI Global Summit, entirely dedicated to AI with expert speakers, advanced robotics, and the AI 4 Future startup competition, focused on innovative projects with AI solutions that can find at WMF new connections with investors and innovation stakeholder like the Bologna Technopole. There's also the World Startup Fest, the benchmark event for the world of open innovation with an exhibition district for international startups, educational stages dedicated to innovative entrepreneurship, and flagship events such as the Final of the largest International startup competition, the Open Innovation & VC Fest, designed for VCs, CVCs, accelerators, incubators, and all the main players in the Open Innovation landscape, features B2B meetings and dedicated networking initiatives, and the Gov Tech Summit, bringing together institutions from around the world to discuss global policy innovation, as well as the Music Fest, a veritable music festival with concerts and artistic performances throughout all three days.

The first 40 educational stages of WMF2024 have also been already announced, on topics ranging from Artificial Intelligence, explored through multiple vertical stages such as Generative AI, AI for Health, AI & Marketing and more, and then coding, content creators, digital strategy, human rights e sustainability and tech and many others. Additionally, there will be a rich lineup of speakers, including representatives from TikTok, Google, Lenovo, Microsoft, Ford and major personalities of the international panorama such as Peter Fletcher, Global Privacy Director at Google, Cardinal Matteo Zuppi, president of Italian bishops conference CEI, Alec Ross, american author, professor of the BBS - Bologna Business School and Board Partner of Amplo, Moojan Ashgari Founder of  Women in AI, social media consultant and industry analyst Matt Navarra, the developer and author Maximiliano Firtman, the Google Ads Automator Nils Rooijmans, Arthur Mosiak, Regional Senior Product Lead at Google and Agnieszka Oleksyn,  Head of the Institute of Sustainability Łazarski University, the President of CINECA Francesco Ubertini, Ott Velsberg - Chief Data Officer of Estonian Government, the activist for human rights Pegah Moshir, Consultant for Africa Region & Journalists for Human Rights Siyabulela Mandela, and Soheyla Haghighi, co-founder of Intraverse.

Applications are still open, and it is possible to apply to two of the calls that have been most successful among the players in the international innovation ecosystem: the Call for Investors and the Global Impact Challenge. On one hand, this presents an opportunity for investors, venture capitalists, open innovation arms of corporations, and investment funds to access the event's community and connect with thousands of international startups within the WMF ecosystem. On the other hand, the competition dedicated to startups offers them the chance to demonstrate on the Mainstage of WMF how their innovative solutions can contribute to changing the world we live in.

With its expanding global reach and attention on crucial themes like AI, sustainability, human rights, and knowledge sharing, WMF is the platform where ideas converge, collaborations thrive, and pathways to a sustainable, inclusive and technologically enriched future are forged.

WMF - We Make Future - International Fair and Festival on Innovation: Digital, AI & Tech

The next appointment with WMF is scheduled on June 13, 14, 15, 2024, at the BolognaFiere, Bologna, Italy. Once again, the event will bring together the very best of digital and social innovation, leading market players, startups and investors, institutions, universities, and non-profit associations. With more than 60,000 attendees in 2023, more than 1,000 speakers and guests from around the world, 3,000 startups, and 100 educational stages, now towards its 12th edition the WMF is a reality with a global identity, a catalyst for innovation for concrete, collective improvement. The event is created and produced by Search On Media Group.

Search On Media Group

Since 2004, the company has aimed to spread digital culture by managing communities, organizing events, and providing strategic and operational consulting in the field of AI & Digital Marketing and Transformation for large companies through the Search On Consulting Business Unit. From the experience and professionalism of Search On Media Group also come two other business unit: the EdTech - which organises the WMF - We Make Future, AI Festival and other educational events - and the Event Agency that organises, for many corporate clients, online, hybrid, and offline events in a customisable and flexible way thanks to the ibrida.io platform.