Meet Stablo Znanja, the Tree of Knowledge Startup for Croatian Students

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November 20, 2018 – Another great initiative for the future generations of Croatia – meet Stablo Znanja, the Tree of Knowledge.
I joined the TCN news team at launch, and I have been far too slack in contributing very much this year – my life got in the way – my kids, and indeed my own blog, but I really could not think of a better story to dust of my TCN login and get tapping on the keyboard again.
Let me introduce you to Stablo Znanja – or the Tree of Knowledge in English. It’s an innovative new space which was launched in Zagreb a year ago, with great potential to expand across the country in the future.
This initiative won me over from the first time that I read about it – and then last week at the G2-4 conference, I met Mate Paškanović Pavković a returnee to Croatia from his birthplace Canada, and I heard even more about this space that aims to pave the way for Croatia’s entrepreneurs – and had to go and see it in the flesh.
At TCN  there are reoccurring themes for paths to a better Croatia, and Paul is always excited at sharing new ideas for ways to cut through the political malarkey that plague this great nation, so I just knew as soon as I stepped foot into the space, that Stablo Znanja would need to be shared with you.
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Mate is young and enthusiastic, and together with the founder of Marko Komericki, they have created a multifunctional space in Zagreb that attracts between 200 and 400 university students per day. 
The space isn’t just any old hangout space – although I must say that the oversized beanbags on offer looked very comfortable! As you walk into the student center you can see the spaces is set up to study, a row of computers and desks – the perfect place to research projects, but it’s not until Mate gives you the tour that you see that Stablo Znanja is also a place for students to connect, and collaborate on a huge range of different projects, and not just school projects. The Stablo Znanja team have made it possible for students to collaborate on startup ideas. Connecting them with information and mentors to help realize their entrepreneurial dreams.
Dreams which Marko and Mate hope will excite and entice the youth of Croatia to stop packing their bags and legging it over the border – and instead stay, and launch businesses in Croatia – or connect with businesses in Croatia and inject a youthful approach. 
The goal of the Tree of Knowledge is to be the starting point for future businesses to be established, creating a new generation of Croatian entrepreneurs. In addition to this, the Tree of Knowledge is designed to help students who may be struggling in their school setting, by giving them the tools and environment to study on their own terms.
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The Tree of Knowledge is entirely free of charge, thanks to the generosity of sponsors who pay the bills and provide ongoing resources, Stablo Znanja is accessible for students every day from 9 am to 5 pm. The space features:
  • Spaces for individual work and group work
  • Charging stations for phones and laptops
  • High-quality technology, with computers suitable for editing videos and photos
  • A fast internet connection
  • Large areas for conferences, meetings, and exhibitions
  • A chill-out space  for students to socialize
  • A green screen studio, ideal for creating videos and editing purposes
The Tree of Knowledge connects and encourages youngsters to take the plunge towards future development, be it in business or in a social setting. The feel of the space is a perfect mix to relax, socialize, meet new people, as well as to study, learn, work with others.
Stablo Znanja  acts as a networking opportunities for those who are looking to start a new business or perhaps have an idea which they’re not sure how to develop, but what it is missing are more mentors – particularly those from abroad who (like David Jakic from the NSW Australian Croatian Chamber of Commerce who has recently agreed  to become a mentor) can share international business knowledge – so if that sounds like something you’d like to be a part of – contact the Stablo Znanja team at here.. They are great guys and would welcome your ideas on how you could mentor or provide help to these Croatian students. 
By giving students the tools they need, the encouragement, mentorship, in the right setting, the future looks to be very bright for Zagreb’s next wave of university students.
Many thanks for taking the time to visit and write this up, SJ – now check out SJ’s blog, Chasing the Donkey.
To learn more about initiatives and innovations in Croatia, follow the TCN Made in Croatia section.


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