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FANTASMEEM is a one-year program initiated by the Goethe-Institut Libanon adopting a holistic approach towards supporting the design industry in Lebanon. This involves capacity building, fostering cultural / social / environmental entrepreneurship, and encouraging collaborations and knowledge sharing.

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FANTASMEEM Forward | Open Call


June - November 2019
Maximum duration: 5 months
Application deadline: May 26, 2019
Ideas Pitching & Interviews with selected candidates: between 17 and 19 June 2019
Announcement Forward-Grantees: June 20, 2019

FANTASMEEM Forward supports designers to become creative entrepreneurs. The program provides you with the chance to develop your creative idea into a sustainable creative business.

FANTASMEEM Forward is for (1) freelancers with an idea of a design product or service they want to develop OR (2) designers who are in the process of starting a business and want to improve their entrepreneurial skills OR (3) small initiatives/startups which seek to develop a new design product or service.

FANTASMEEM Forward gives designers from the MENA region who are based in Lebanon the chance to develop their ideas into minimum viable products OR improve their business structure if they already have a design startup/studio or are in the process of starting a new one.

FANTASMEEM Forward seeks to strengthen the Lebanese design industry and aims at supporting especially design practices that focus on social or environmental needs and are strongly responsive to their contexts.
  1. Design project grant consisting of
  • A grant up to 7,000 US$ for individuals and up to 12,000 US$ for teams of two persons. The grant will be paid in three installments: 40% upon signing the contract, 40% upon handing in the mid-term report and 20% upon handing in the final report.
  • Financial support for production and material up to 6,000 US$
  • The design project grant will be paid in Lebanese Pounds.
2. Mentorship offering you insights on how to achieve your design and business goals.

3. Access to a working space where you can develop your prototype if needed

4. Participation in workshops that are offered in the framework of FANTASMEEM (participation in at least two workshops is obligatory)

5. Access to local and international networks

6. Visibility in local press and media
  1. Read the eligibility criteria and submission guidelines below.
  2. Complete the online application form provided by the Goethe-Institut Libanon (see below)
  3. Upload the obligatory documents in PDF format (up to 5MB)
  • CV (please name the document: cv.pdf)
  • Portfolio (please name the document: portfolio.pdf)
  • Financial plan -> please use this document for your financial plan (please name the financial plan: financialplan.xlsl).

4. Upload any other relevant documents that present your project idea (JPEG photos, business plans, presentations, etc.).

5. Review and agree to the terms and conditions of participation.

6. Submit your application.

7. Write us an e-mail that you have submitted your application: fantasmeem-beirut@goethe.de

Applicants must apply through the application form. Applications will not be accepted by any other delivery method. Applications that are incomplete, or not received by the deadline, will be excluded from consideration. We recommend applying well in advance in order to avoid technical problems.
1. Are you a designer from the MENA region and do you reside in Lebanon?
2. Are you a designer, maker or craftsman/craftswoman with a professional experience in:
  • Graphic design
  • Product design
  • Animation and Illustration
  • Fashion design
  • Type design
  • Interior design
  • Landscape design
  • Other design related fields
3. Do you have an innovative business idea that you want to realize?
  • You can be either a freelancer with an idea of a design product or service
  • OR you are in the process of starting a business and need to improve your entrepreneurial skills
  • OR you are a small initiative or startup that seeks to develop a new design product or service.
4. Have you obtained a degree in design or any related field (art, manufacturing, engineering etc.) and do you have professional experience of a minimum of 2 years (freelancer or employed)?

5. Or you do not have a university degree, but you have an equivalent professional experience of a minimum of 5 years (freelancer or employed)?

6. You can apply as an individual or as a team of two persons.

7. Applicants must be able to commit to develop their project idea and participate in at least two of the workshops.

8. Students currently enrolled in a university degree program are not eligible to apply.

9.The program is partly in English and partly in Arabic.
The jury made-up of design experts representing local and international design scenes, entrepreneurial ecosystem experts, marketing and business experts assesses the submitted applications on five criteria and awards 1 (min.) to 5 (max.) points for each selection criteria:
  1. Design: Does the portfolio show a high quality of craftsmanship and design practice?
  2. Motivation & Suitability: How motivated and suitable is the applicant/are the applicants?
  3. Innovation: How innovative is the submitted project idea?
  4. Feasibility: How feasible is the project idea in cultural, financial and operational terms?  
  5. Sustainability: How sustainable is the project idea (socially, culturally, ecologically and economically)?
The selection process is anonymous and aims towards diversity of practices. It consists of the following seven steps:

1. Registration & Administrative Check of Applications by Goethe-Institut, FANTASMEEM team
FANTASMEEM team conducts a formal check to ensure that the applications comply with the formal application requirements (e.g. if the application is complete, all necessary documents have been submitted, clear budget).

2. Evaluation of Applications by Jurors
FANTASMEEM team selects a jury upon recommendations from experts. The jury will be made-up of design experts representing local and international design scenes, entrepreneurial ecosystem experts, marketing and business experts. Each juror evaluates all applications according to the selection criteria. The FANTASMEEM team is not part of the jury and does not have a vote in the selection process.

3. Shortlisting of Applications by Goethe-Institut
FANTASMEEM team collects and summarizes the recommendations of each juror by ranking the applicants scores. The shortlisted applicants will be invited to an interview and to pitch their ideas in front of the jury.

4. Interview & Ideas Pitching in front of Jury
The shortlisted applicants are invited to pitch their ideas in front of a jury at the office of Goethe-Institut Libanon in the week from May, 27 until June 2.

5. Final Selection of Grantees
Based on the written application, the interview and the ideas pitch the jury will select the final grantees.

6. Announcement Forward-Grantees
The grantees of FANTASMEEM Forward will be announced on June 4.

7. Notification and Contracting
The grantees are contacted and a grant contract is signed with Goethe-Institut.
During the FANTASMEEM Forward program the applicant
  • Is committed to developing his/her design project idea
  • Is committed to present his/her work and to share his/her knowledge as well as to provide regular updates on project process upon request by Goethe-Institut, FANTASMEEM team
  • Presents a mid-term report, adapted to the individual time frame within the grant period
  • Presents a final report, adapted to the individual time frame within the grant period
  • attends agreed regular meetings with mentors & deliver requested assignments given by mentors
  • attends the workshops (the attendance of at least two workshops is obligatory)
  • provides the FANTASMEEM team with financial reports of the material expenses
Any questions?
Write us: fantasmeem-beirut@goethe.de

Apply here

Apply here!

FANTASMEEM | Training Modules

FANTASMEEM consists of four independent training modules as well as several accompanying activities targeting designers, design startups and entrepreneurs, makers and design professionals. Product & furniture, graphic & type, fashion & textile, interior and landscape designers as well as animators and illustrators from Lebanon and the MENA region who are residing in Lebanon can apply to one or several training modules.



February 19 - March 5, 2019
Design Residency | Hammana Artist House

FANTASMEEM Faculty is a two-week residency enabling 20 participants to develop their startup ideas through a mini-curriculum around design entrepreneurship. Besides financial support, the residents benefit from professional mentoring.



January – March 2019
Lebanon & abroad

FANTASMEEM Factory offers job-shadowing opportunities, which include an approximately 1-4-week long stay in design related initiatives/startups/companies in Lebanon or abroad.


June – November 2019

FANTASMEEM Forward supports designers in implementing their innovative business ideas. Besides receiving a startup grant, the participants are continually accompanied by mentors, have access to a working space and benefit from input sessions which are adapted to the grant holders' needs.


May – September 2019

FANTASMEEM Fair provides opportunities to visit international trade fairs, conferences and conventions. The selected designers benefit from networking opportunities and present their products and services to international audience.

FANTASMEEM | Ongoing Parallel Activities

In addition to the four training modules, public events are organized, research findings presented, and the products or services of the participating designers showcased.  


Design experts are invited to present topics relevant to innovation in the design industry and to discuss with aspiring designers and the public.


Accompanying research contributes to gaining in-depth knowledge about the development of the Lebanese design industry.


Young designers present their services and products on online platforms, thus making them available to the local and international market.


On behalf of the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ), the GIZ (Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit) and the Goethe-Institut promote the emerging market of cultural and creative industries in Africa and in the Middle East.