The iStartLab is the innovation laboratory of Instituto Superior Técnico (IST) with the mission of promoting innovation and the entrepreneurial spirit of its students, researchers and professors.
The iStartLab organizes activities related to innovation and entrepreneurship and aims to be the contact point between IST and the entrepreneurial ecosystem, including, among others, incubators, accelerators, investors and the industry. The focus of iStartLab are early-stage projects for new products or services with scientific or technological innovation and targeted to have a global impact. In particular, it supports the proof-of-concept stage of such projects and in gathering evidence that the product or service has a sustainable business model. At this stage, the projects need support in prototyping, customer discovery and validation and access to investors and funding opportunities.
The iStartLab also has a role in bringing together like-minded people, with their willingness to create value for Society. This is achieved by matching initiatives, best practices sharing and by providing support and coaching tailored to the needs of students, researchers and professors. It also promotes and fosters a network of scientific advisors and business mentors, taking advantage of the volunteer effort of the IST community including its alumni.
Since its creation, in February 2017, the iStartLab has received the support of several entities such as the American Corners Portugal, EIT InnoEnergy, Milwaukee Power Tools, Santander Universidades and Everis Foundation. Their support is hugely appreciated.