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Innovator Fellowship 2021

The objective of EIT Food Innovator Fellowship is to empower talents to co-create, address, and gain experiences on excellent ideas capable of bringing their careers a step further, and foster innovators ready to respond to global food challenges.


The objective of EIT Food Innovator Fellowship is to empower talents to co-create, address, and gain experiences on excellent ideas capable of bringing their careers a step further, and foster innovators ready to respond to global food challenges.

New information

The ongoing COVID-19 pandemic crisis holds a degree of uncertainty in implementing dedicated programmes for Agri-Food System professionals. Empowered and encouraged by the results obtained in the 2020 edition, Innovator Fellowship 2021 will carry out its programme online.
Our unique entrepreneurial programme's ground-architecture remains unchanged with its - Foodathon – one to one mentoring - intensive and high-value training - and other unparalleled benefits!
In case the pandemic situation should improve, the EIT Food Innovator Fellowship Team will do its very best to arrange one or more in-person events following the country's regulations where the event will take place. It remains clear that the EIT Food Fellowship team places the safety of the participants' health as a primary priority.

The next step in your career

Global challenges in the Agri-Food system require a mind-shift and a thrilling change in the awareness and competencies of talents: the new generation of entrepreneurs is asked to play a key role in solving the planet’s food-related issues.

Talents from academia (Post-doctoral researchers) and non-academia (Young Professionals) are called to boost and diversify their career paths, solve global challenges, and enhance their career prospects.



The future innovative leaders of the Food system need a new set of competences beyond those acquired in research and academic environments - they require a proficiency that allows them to propose, manage, implement, and lead interdisciplinary/multidisciplinary research and innovation projects, to be able to transform lab-ideas into business ideas.

Our objective

EIT Food Innovator Fellowship aims at identifying talents worldwide with creative and innovative potential, wishing to expand their skill repertoire through advanced training for the development of an innovative idea with significant impact in the food system.

If you have an idea that may impact the Food system and you are passionate about tackling sustainability issues, here are your challenges.

The journey

EIT Food Innovator Fellowship is designed to offer you a highly stimulating and creative six-months programme coupled with the acquisition of key skills and mentoring to translate an idea in business idea. After an evaluation step, aiming to select the best talents/ideas, the talents will participate in a Foodathon.

The Foodathon will be an immersive, competitive, and stimulating experience where you will form a team with the best, most exciting ideas. Furthermore, during the Foodathon you will be able to boost and diversify your career path, creating new networks and improving their competences/skills.

The Foodathon will serve to form and consolidate teams, to co-create and further develop the best ideas proposed by the participants in a multi/interdisciplinary setting, with one-to-one mentoring. The newly created teams should demonstrate complementarities and synergy. The best teams, will be selected at the end of the Foodathon; after pitching their ideas in front of an evaluation committee. The selected teams will win the next step of the journey.

A tailor-made Training that will make a difference

The winning teams will gain a high-level complementary skills training led by the partner organisations. The training will be tailor-made, unique and high-level, delivered by highly-specialised experts. Also, mentoring will be provided along with all the duration of the programme. The training will cover areas designed to enable the selected teams to acquire entrepreneurial skills together with specific transversal skills to further develop and implement their idea. Participants will have the opportunity to broaden their horizons and deepen their competencies, learning how to analyse their idea from different angles to have a viable, sustainable and impactful project/product or service with an impact in the Agri-Food system. The scheduled workshops will be accompanied by structured mentoring to assist in the to advance the team's original project, via a real working viability frame.

Moreover, the teams will fine-tune their initial idea into a mature proposal to further expand opportunities for financial support. EIT Food has in place other programmes supporting more mature business ideas.

Your Intellectual Property Rights

We understand that you may have concerns about intellectual property rights (IPR). During the Foodathon, the different participants' ideas will likely be blended and cross-fertilized, thus becoming something new, and greater. If a possible IPR concern should appear, this will need to be evaluated on a case-by-case. Please refer to the point 9. of the Rules of Participation.

Be creative

Be creative, be a leader in the Agri-Food system and transform your lab-ideas into a business idea!
When change is coming, you can watch it happen or you can be part of it. We strongly believe that Post-Docs and Young Professionals have the chance today to ride the wave that is revolutionizing the Food system.
In such a fast-paced sector employability depends on how much effort you invest in diversifying your career path.
With the Innovator Fellowship Programme you'll learn how to take your Project Idea and make it happen, and you'll be given the skills and the tools to do it successfully.

Who can apply?

If you are, at the date of the call deadline, in possession of a doctoral degree or if you have have a Master Certificate and at least four years of full-time equivalent research and innovation (R&I) experience, you are qualified to apply. EIT Food Innovator Fellowship is open to all creative talents from academia (Post-Docs) and non-academia (Young Professional) worldwide.

Please download and read carefully these documents before applying:


Should you need further clarification, do not hesitate to get in touch with us at

The 2021 edition of EIT Food Innovator Fellowship

The Foodathon 2020

The 2019 edition of EIT Food Innovator Fellowship: a one-year journey at a glance

Innovator Fellowship - Interviews 2019

The best moments of the Foodathon 2019 - EIT Food Innovator Fellowship


Project lead

Me 2
Mario Roccaro

Programme Manager Education

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