About Us

Founded in 2000, The Idea Village formalized in 2002 as an independent 501©(3) nonprofit dedicated to engaging our community to embrace innovation, entrepreneurship, and new thinking. The Idea Village has established itself as a globally-recognized leader in developing place-based entrepreneurial ecosystems. As a result, New Orleans is now in the top 10% of best cities to start a business in the country (WalletHub), with startup activity 64% above the national average (The Data Center). We've been called America's #1 Biggest Brain Magnet (Forbes) and 1 of the 20 Hottest Startup Hubs in America (The Kauffman Foundation).

The Idea Village is committed to sustaining the local entrepreneurial movement by providing direct services to entrepreneurs, engaging the community, and supporting initiatives that leverage entrepreneurship to catalyze change.


To identify, support, and retain entrepreneurial talent in New Orleans.


New Orleans will be the hub of entrepreneurship in the South.

Our Entrepreneur Season


Our Annual Cycle

From in-depth educational workshops to innovative networking events, mentorship, and intensive strategic consulting, the Entrepreneur Season was created to instill rhythms and rituals around entrepreneurship for the New Orleans community.

Phase 1

July Season Launch

July marks the beginning of our annual Entrepreneur Season, when we unveil a full calendar of unique events for the community and open applications for participation in our entrepreneur support programs.

Phase 2

August - December The 1st Half

This is when the season kicks into full gear as we roll up our sleeves and get to work, helping select founders accelerate the growth of their ventures and educating & connecting the community at large.

Phase 3

January - February The 2nd Half

At this point in the Season, New Orleans Entrepreneur Week is top of mind, and our offerings take on a fundraising and pitch-prep focus. We work with select entrepreneurs to conduct due diligence, set budgets, and connect with local and national investors.

Phase 4

March New Orleans Entrepreneur Week

March is all about elevating entrepreneurship & innovation in New Orleans. The Idea Village hosts NOEW, an annual business festival that has become part of the city’s cultural calendar.

Phase 5

April - June The Post-Season

The Post-Season is when The Idea Village team reflects on the success of the Season, measures our impact across programs, and connects with key stakeholders as we plan and innovate for the next year.

We deliver against our mission by executing an Entrepreneur Season, our annual cycle of unique programs and events that drive entrepreneurial activity in New Orleans. The Season culminates each March with New Orleans Entrepreneur Week.