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Can Split become a Mediterranean Tech Hub?

Nikolina Kukoč

Nikolina Kukoč


To make matters clear right from the start, we at Split Tech City have the answer to this question and, according to us at least, it is a resounding: “Yes! It certainly can!”

And we are and will keep doing everything in our power to make it a reality.

Because we believe in the bright future of our city, and that belief has been proven this past weekend during the NEXT Youth Conference, as well as during the first and the second edition of the Split Tech City Festival.

It is also proven by the internationals who choose Split as their place to live and work, as well as by our growing tech community.

Split isn’t just sun, sea, and tourism. And it is time everyone got on board with this.

The Mediterranean Tech Hub as we see it

Anyone and anything is capable of growth, and Split is no exception. While our city is still a big draw for tourists, in recent years it lived through an awakening of sorts.

The local tech community managed to grow and keep things interesting throughout the challenging period of the global pandemic and beyond.

It also keeps being lively with numerous events and growing day by day, thus enabling Split to grow as a tech hub.

This awakening of the local tech community that happened years ago, opened another point of view when we’re telling the story of our hometown: that of a city that is not attractive only for tourists and only during the summer months but is a great place to live and work year-round.

The local tech community which keeps growing

What started years ago during the first Open Coffee Split meetup is now an association that continues to actively gather more and more members of the local tech community together. One thing’s for sure: Split Tech City was active before and will continue to be active for years to come to make Split into a Mediterranean Tech Hub.

Aside from us as an association, what makes us really happy is the increased activity of the companies that are members of Split Tech City.

They have also started initiating meetups that relate to what they do. Alongside other worthy initiatives and institutions that are actively contributing to the building of the local tech, startup, and entrepreneurial ecosystem, this gives an additional wind in the sails in the right direction.

Many internationals have also recognized this shift in the mindset and have chosen Split and the region as a place to call home.

In the end, all of these changes that keep happening have their roots in the fact that the local tech community has grown enough for its enthusiasm to start spreading into the overall society and the city’s ecosystem, as well.

The only thing that remains is to harness this enthusiasm to implement changes in the city and the region.

Changes to implement and things to work on

The implementation of these changes should come from the local government. A non-profit association that gathers the local privately-owned companies can only do so much.

There are a few necessary changes we need to implement first. Ideas and interesting points that we didn’t just pluck out of thin air, but that were discussed during a panel discussion on this same topic held at a recent PR Conference.

We’ll write them here for all of you to think through:

  • More needs to be done to work on encouraging the entrepreneurial mindset in society at large. Additionally, a supportive environment needs to be encouraged because failure in entrepreneurship is not the end – it is just a lesson.
  • The local government needs to question what it can offer to possible future citizens of Split who will choose this city as a Mediterranean Tech Hub for their life and work. A lot of infrastructure needs to be improved such as places to live long-term, public transport, social and cultural infrastructure, etc.
  • Split is branded worldwide as a tourist destination. To shift the branding of the city towards a Mediterranean Tech Hub, a widespread collaboration is needed between several actors towards this change: the local government, the local tourist board, and the local tech community. And all of them must work towards this same goal. Otherwise, the resources are dispersed and inefficient.

It might be challenging, but we believe that with the perseverance and hard work of everyone included reaching this same goal is not impossible.

The goal of making Split a true Mediterranean Tech Hub – a city where tech and tourism coexist and together create a vibrant ecosystem year-round.

We can only do it together, or to quote the Split Tech City president and eternal volunteer, Toni Trivković: “Let’s use mutual force to make a bigger wave that we will all surf together!”

Cover photo: Julio Juraga
Article photos: Ivan Gracin


About author:

Nikolina Kukoč

Researching is woven into my DNA, but I am a musician at heart. Interested in too many things and always curious. Forever in love with Split and enchanted by people who teach me new things. When I am not creating content about Split's tech community, you will find me in singing rehearsals, somewhere in nature, in the theater, or with my head stuck in a book. I do my best to live by the verse from the opera "Fedora" by Umberto Giordano: "Love forbids you not to love."

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