GIST Business Incubation Eligibility Requirements

NOTE: GIST reserves the right to adjust these requirements as needed.

Applicant Requirements

  • The applicant must be 18-40 years old on the application deadline 28 February 2024. 
  • The applicant must be a citizen of 130+ countries GIST works in. The applicant does not need to be currently residing in that country.
  • The applicant must not submit more than one application for GIST Business Incubation.
  • The applicant must be eligible to obtain a U.S. J-1 visa for participation in the program, if selected. The applicant must have a valid passport with an expiration date of at least 31 December, 2025. The applicant must be able to provide a copy of his or her passport immediately upon acceptance into the program. The applicant must be able to obtain a U.S. J-1 visa. Before applying to this program, you must read and understand all J-1 visa requirements at the State Department’s website.
  • Applicants must be available to commit to the full duration of the program.
  • Applicants who have previously participated in GIST Business Incubation will not be eligible to apply.
  • There is no limit to the number of people on a project team. However, all teams must appoint one person to represent the team throughout the entire program. This person is required to meet all of the eligibility requirements and is the person under whose name the application should be submitted.
  • If you are working on a team, the representative who submitted your application will be the only person to travel to and participate in GIST Business Incubation, should your application advance. Applicants are not to fill out the application on behalf of another person.
  • All applicants are required to have sufficient proficiency in the English language to successfully to participate in the program and to function on a day-to-day basis in the United States.
  • All applicants must have a valid, active business. This will be proven by the applicant uploading proof of funding, proof of customer sales and/or proof of partnerships on the application. 

Application Requirements

  • The application must be received by the announced submission deadline.
  • Application must be filled out in full, in English. All answers must be "real" and complete (ie not random keystrokes) Staff will not follow up with applicants who do not submit a full application.
  • The application must be the original work of the Idea or Startup applicant.
  • For proposals of similar merit, the gender of applicant, region, and subject area will be given consideration, in order to ensure equity and diversity.

Business/Technology Requirements

  • The business/technology must be the original work of the applicant.
  • Applications that fall under the following categories will not be accepted:
    • Research projects with no demonstrable commercial potential
    • Teams based at a charity or foundation (not-for-profit) organization
    • Teams based at organizations that buy and resell technologies and other goods
  • Priority will be given to applications where the applicant has a strong and specific plan for how they would use their time in the United States to further their business (ie specific connections, network access, professional groups, etc). 

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