Science and Technology

Exchange Skills for Life Experience, from San Francisco to Rome

Initiative: ​Partnering Italian and American professionals and companies to exchange skills and know-how for life experience

Sponsored by:​ DSTech Srl, Rome, Italy ​

Targeting:​ Freelance and employed professionals from the San Francisco Bay Area and the U.S. with experience in the Innovation and Digital Technology with specific skills in:

–  Digital Marketing

–  Software Development Leadership

–  Business Consulting and Strategy

–  Agile and PJM Expertise

Keywords:​ Sharing economy, soft skills, cross-cultural exchange, life experience, mentorship, partnerships, digital innovation

Concept:​ Digital technology has enabled us to achieve Sharing Economies: systems that facilitate the sharing of underused assets directly between individuals or organizations, matching ‘needs’ and ‘haves’. In this spirit, DSTech, an Italian digital start-up that has a ‘need’ for soft skills and know-how from leading Silicon Valley companies, is interested in sponsoring eligible American professionals that ‘have’ those skills and experience to offer, to live and work in Rome, Italy, for a period of time. In exchange, DSTech will offer unique cultural and life experiences to these ‘guest mentors’ which will help satisfy the ‘need’ of professional Americans to gain a more international perspective, experience authentic daily life in a different culture, in this case, Italy, which has a very positive reputation amongst Americans, and take a breath of fresh air from the daily grind of American working life that offers very little vacation time or encouragement to depart from the standard career path.

How it works: ​By exploiting DSTech’s existing network with the SF Bay Area, digital marketing channels (Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, CraigsList, etc) and exploring partnerships with leading SF-based tech companies (Slack, Adobe, Facebook, Google, etc), DSTech will attract interest in the program and invite eligible candidates to apply via their website and go through a simple application process, including a Skype interview. Selected candidates will be formally invited to participate in the program for a defined period of time (3-12 months) where DSTech will organize and cover costs of candidates Visa, accommodation in the center of Rome, one flight and offer a stipend to cover their dedicated time. Candidates will be required to work 5-8 hours per day in the office, offering coaching and mentoring to DSTech teams, while DSTech will offer to organize various social events and sightseeing in Rome and throughout Italy (on weekends) to provide the candidate an enriching and authentic Italian life experience. At the end of the program, candidates will be surveyed and invited to present their experiences and observations to DSTech and their home company in the US.

Execution Plan: ​DSTech aims to pilot this initiative in January 2020 with its first candidates to validate the concept and have at least a handful of success stories. Once validated, DSTech will solicit interest and sponsorship from the US Embassy, the Fulbright Program and other credible stakeholders.