Rimini greets WMF2021: thousands of people in attendance and online

WMF2021 – Bologna, 22/07/2021

On 17 July the curtain fell on the ninth edition of WMF , the largest Innovation Festival which, after almost two years of waiting, confirms its role as an accelerator by returning to welcome its live audience again.

In fact, at the Palacongressi di Rimini , during the three days scheduled, about 2,500 people participated in the presence a day , the maximum capacity allowed by the spaces available and by the safety standards guaranteed by the Festival staff and the structure.

Also for this reason, as already happened for the two events held in 2020, the WMF2021 was characterized by a hybrid format and enhanced by the hybrid online platform.io , which allowed a total of over 24 thousand people to follow the entire agenda and the interventions of the Festival.

Also this year " We Make Future " was the claim with which WMF explained its mission: to build the future starting from the 360-degree exploration of the world of innovation from professional training – with more than 60 thematic rooms on innovation , web marketing and entrepreneurship – to over 100 events dedicated to current events , culture, entertainment, the business world, addressing and investigating the main technological innovations and their social potential in Italy and abroad.

“Italy is much more than is often thought. We are a propulsion center that combines innovation, tradition and culture. We have demonstrated this, together with thousands of people, this year too ” declared Cosmano Lombardo , creator of the WMF and CEO of Search On Media Group. “ WMF2021 was the Festival not only of restarting, but above all of courage. Courage to feel the duty to build, to commit oneself for the good of all and for a future that is really and concretely better. In these three days, once again, thanks to the courage, work and participation of all, we have taken concrete steps to build better communities. The credit goes to all the people who believed in this enterprise: participants, speakers, moderators, sponsors who believe and experience work as a form of building society ”.

The WMF2021 Mainstage: PNRR, robotics, startups, shows and more than 60 guests from all over the world

The works on the Mainstage were inaugurated with alive concert by Roy Paci and Aretuska, who at WMF2021 set the starting point of “La despedida”, the tour with which they will greet their fans after 25 years of music.

The parterre of speakers and institutional guests has never been so large, including ministers Patrizio Bianchi , Enrico Giovannini and Luigi Di Maio , undersecretary Anna Ascani (Mise), Laura Moro (MiC), Vice-president of the Emilia-Romagna Region Elly Schlein , mayors and councilors from all over Italy including Chiara Appendino (Mayor of Turin), Federico Pizzarotti (Mayor of Parma), Valeria Mancinelli (Mayor of Ancona) and councilors for innovation from all over Italy including Stefano Ciuoffo (Tuscany Region), and Vincenzo Colla (Councilor for economic development and green economy, work, training of the Emilia-Romagna Region), Cecilia Del Re (Municipality of Florence), Paolo Petralia Camassa (Municipality of Palermo), Giacomo Angeloni (Municipality of Bergamo), Giovanni Pagano (Municipality of Naples), Lorenzo Lipparini (Municipality of Milan), Fabrizio Manzulli (Municipality of Taranto) and Roberta Lombardi (Councilor for Ecological and Digital Transition of the Lazio Region).

Through their testimonies, round tables and institutional work tables, meetings and panels dedicated to the analysis of the various missions of the National Recovery and Resilience Plan ( PNRR ) were staged on the WMF Mainstage. Among the issues addressed, the ecological and energy transition , digitization , the future of the school , the enhancement of the Italian cultural and territorial heritage with the UNESCO creative cities (the mayor of Fabriano Gabriele Santarelli, the mayor of Lucca Alessandro Tambellini, the Deputy Mayor of Parma Marco Bosi, Deputy Mayor of Pesaro Daniele Vimini, Councilor Alberto Acito of Matera , and Alba Councilor Emanuele Bolla), as well as the management of the pandemic from a health and social point of view .

At the center of the WMF agenda also technology , robotics and scientific research thanks to the contribution of many authoritative voices of the scientific world such as that of Maria Fossati and Manuel Catalano of the Italian Institute of Technology (IIT), of the aerospace engineer Chiara Cocchiara , of Giuseppe Borghi of ESA (European Space Agency), Anna Grassellino (FermiLab), Philip Kotler and of the inventor and physicist Federico Faggin .

Luciano Floridi (Professor of Philosophy and Ethics of Information) and Sanzio Bassini (IFAB Scientific Director) from the Mainstage awarded – to six young researchers – the first National Research Award on AI and Big Data announced by WMF and IFAB.

From technology to current affairs , passing through human rights and the theme of the fight against the mafia : on the WMF Mainstage also the testimony of the founder of Emergency Gino Strada , the journalist and activist Siyabulela Mandela and the deputy prosecutor of Reggio Calabria Giuseppe Lombardo .
Ample space also for Italian and international entrepreneurship : the final phase of the largest Startup Competition in Italy – conducted by Diletta Leotta and Cosmano Lombardo – saw the winners Recornea and MyLeg respectively win the prize assigned by the jury of investors and the public, while the Scaleup for Future panel allowed the comparison with 6 leading companies from all over the world including Bidroom , SumUp , foodpanda , Revolut , ContentSquare and PatchAi.


Afterwards, a round table involved Cosmano Lombardo , the Honorable Luca Carabetta and the President of the National Association of Young Innovators Gabriele Ferrieri in a moment of reflection and discussion on the Italian and international startup world and on their respective potential and limits on which it is necessary. intervene in a concrete way, such as with regard to the difficulties of integration of the youngest and of women.

On the main stage of the Festival also the representatives of companies and multinational realities, such as TIM – in the person of Tim Venture CEO Carlo TursiTIKTOK , BEREC , Amazon , Intel , LinkedIn and Deloitte , who illustrated their vision and assets from the Mainstage. and the most innovative projects.
The delivery of the WMF Awards – The Innovation Awards – dedicated to projects and campaigns of realities such as Mediaset (digital tourism category), Rai Pubblica Utilità (accessibility), Ratio Studio (Best Digital Event), ResQ (solidarity and human rights), Retelit (tech digital transformation).

To accompany the agenda of the WMF during the three days there are also many moments of shows and music : the presence of Alessandro Borghi, the director Neri Parenti and the actor and voice actor Angelo Maggi, who spoke about the changes that the world of cinema and entertainment.
Inside the Innovation Film Fest many screenings and directors intervened, including the film " Non hate ", with director Mauro Mancini – who was also awarded an Award for his social commitment -, and " La grande onda" , short animation on the 'Ndrangheta by Francesco Tortorella .

The projects " Green Storytellers" , " 58BPM" and "PS – An optimistic look from the end of the world" were also presented, resulting from the call launched by WMF and Mediaset Infinity in 2020. Following, a round table on innovation, cinematography, young people and future with Barbascura X – scientific popularizer and youtuber – directors Elena Beatrice , Daniele Lince , Davide Mela , Mara Moschini and Marco Cortesi (directors of “ Green storytellers” ) and Marco Zingaretti , director of “ 58BPM”.


The Jackal told the story of their project and talked about the fundamental role of the creators, while I Sansoni accompanied the entire programming of the Mainstage with moments of live shows and interviews alongside Cosmano Lombardo.

Thanks to the partnership between WMF and Rai Accessibility , the concerts and artistic performances have been interpreted in LIS, the Italian Sign Language, to make the Festival even more accessible and inclusive.
We wanted to continue and will continue this work of co-construction of the Festival undertaken years ago together with the large community of the WMF, to which we dedicate our work and to which today we are more united than ever. It is together with all the people who supported us today in the realization of this ninth edition that in June 2022 we will move to the Rimini Fair "- Cosmano Lombardo anticipates, launching what will be the 10th edition of the Festival – " for the creation of a which will be further innovated to be able to experience an event that I would define increased ".

Training, Innovation Districts, Open Stage and Expo Area in WMF2021

The intervention of over 600 speakers and more than 60 rooms allowed WMF2021 to structure a very wide training offer and to address current issues and trends including Cybersecurity , AI, Robotics, Circular Economy , Social Media, Open Innovation, Blockchain, Aerospace , Public Administration , eSports and SDGs , whose vertical room was created together with the UNESCO Dialogues of the Chairs network.

Three days of networking in safety also among the stands of the WMF Expo Area : over 100 exhibitors – including Stellantis, Trustpilot , Big Commerce , Hoepli and Sprinklr – and the sponsors of the Festival such as Aruba , Mashfrog , Nexi , ESA , TIM .

Great news of this 9th edition of the Festival is a completely new Startup District capable of hosting over 40 startups , which presented their pitches to the public on a special Open Stage .
New innovation districts dedicated to specific issues and initiatives were also presented at WMF2021 such as the Women in Tech panel, the Book District – dedicated to readers, writers and publishing houses – and Innovation Film Fest , whose screening program is then continued by the sea in the spaces of Samsara in Riccione.

WMF2021 also offered activities and events outside the Rimini Palacongressi: space for artists and buskers, robot performances, a drone area equipped for training and skill competitions by professional pilots and a test space. drive of the models of the Stellantis group , Official Car of the WMF2021. During the three days, the truck of the Postal Police hosted the interventions of WMF Youth – the WMF event dedicated to young people – and as part of the "Una Vita da Social" project, an educational campaign on social networks and cyberbullying. .

An even more fair setting that already anticipates the future of WMF, which on 16, 17 and 18 June 2022 will move to the Rimini Fair to further expand its gaze on the future and on the world of Digital and Social Innovation.

WMF2021 – We Make Future


With over 24,000 present and online attendees in 2021 and more than 600 speakers and guests from all over the world, WMF is the largest Festival on Digital and Social Innovation. Conceived and produced by Search On Media Group, WMF2021 was one of the first major events to return to attendance and to guarantee online participation through the hybrid.io platform. The dates for the 2022 edition have already been confirmed, when WMF will move to the Rimini Fair to further amplify its innovative potential.

Search On Media Group

Since 2004 it has had the goal of spreading digital culture by managing communities, supporting sharing activities and advising large companies on digital marketing issues. From the Search On experience comes the Education Business Unit – which organizes the WMF and other training events – and the hybrid.io platform – which manages online and offline events in a customizable and flexible way.

For more information and material:
WMF Press Kit: www.webmarketingfestival.it/press > WMF Press Office: press@ilfestival.it / 051 0951294

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