The “Margherita Gardens’ Greenhouse” is a space dedicated to the promotion of innovation and of the entrepreneurial culture.
It deals with an urban regeneration project, in the middle of the Giardini Margherita (the most popular and centrally located green park in Bologna). The project born in 2013 when the City of Bologna - along with ART-ER, the Golinelli Foundation and Kilowatt - received a regional financing aimed at boosting territorial competitiveness and innovation. Daisy - the name of the project - foresaw the setting up of a co-working space, facilities for the training of young students and teachers in entrepreneurship and an accelerator for start-ups and creative/innovative business ideas. Through this financing, the project was able to renovate the building and the setting up of the services which are currently delivered.
The project covered two years of activity, dedicated to the renovation of the buildings and to the setting up of the services that are delivered and received a total budget of around one million Euro.
The accelerator “Serre di ART-ER” consists of a 90 sq. mt divided into 7 offices for startups or business projects (including one dedicated to international mobility activities), 2 meeting rooms (available on request) and a office for ART-ER staff and EmiliaRomagnaStartup editorial staff.
Startups / projects selected can access their spaces for a period of six months and benefit from a range of facilities to enable their acceleration and growth. The requested contribution for each startup/business project is 70 euro/month.

Resources needed

The project that created Le Serre dei Giardini covered two years of activity, dedicated to the renovation of the buildings and to the setting up of the services that are delivered and received a total budget of around one million Euro.

Evidence of success

The successes achieved by Le Serre are collected in an impact document, the main indicators (for the 2015-2019 period) are:
- 204 companies used Serre’s consulting/mentorship services
- 67 of these companies re-used the services a second time
- 87 project of enterprise participated to their incubation and impact programmes
- 11 of these projects turned in actual companies
Full impact document available at the following website:

Difficulties encountered

The most powerful aspect of Le Serre is its multidimensional approach, which gives the perfect environment to jump from the idea to the concrete business: the environment is filled with both institutional and private stakeholders from the territory.

Potential for learning or transfer

Le Serre are a generative space of contamination and exchange, and it is with this spirit that many projects came to life between the park and the offices, thanks to the collaboration of the communities that found their home here. Le Serre host different projects ranging from sustainable agriculture to design, from circular economy to entrepreneurship for migrant people.
For the management of the space, a hybrid approach has been adopted, which includes:
- the involvement of both institutional (such as the Municipality of Bologna, the Golinelli foundation and ART-ER) and non-institutional agents, giving the opportunity to Le Serre to act as a bridge between innovative and non-structured agents and the institutional ones.
- Governance includes profit activities which balance the non-profit ones, which usually have major social impact but low economic sustainability
- Within the different spaces there are occasions of contamination between different worlds.

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Main institution
Metropolitan City of Bologna
Start Date
January 2013
End Date


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