Academic Profile: Technology Entrepreneurship and Business Development

The profile is designed to address: a) the clearly articulated needs of our Bachelor program, b) the clear evidence for the growing needs of our society for more engineering professionals possessing entrepreneurial skills and competences.

It is a fact that over the last four decades, technology entrepreneurship has become an increasingly important global phenomenon and should become a key component of modern engineering education. It is perceived as necessary for growth, differentiation, and competitive advantage at the firm, regional, and national levels. This new profile offers a rare combination of technology entrepreneurship and business development skills and competences which are highly relevant in the context of both new technology startups and existing firms.

The description of the profile in the programme structure will illustrate how the combination of courses, project work and involvement in the SDU entrepreneurial ecosystem will provide a competitive advantage for students on the job market or as founders of new technology-based firms.

Structure of the programme

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For PDI Bachelor undergraduates

For non-PDI Bachelor undergraduates

Technology entrepreneurship lies at the heart of many important aspects of contemporary economy, including those around launching and growing new technology firms, regional economic development, selecting the appropriate stakeholders to take ideas to markets, and educating managers, engineers, and other highly qualified professionals. We define Technology entrepreneurship as an investment in a project that assembles and deploys highly qualified professionals and heterogeneous assets that are intricately related to advances in scientific and technological knowledge for the purpose of creating and capturing value for a firm (Bailetti, 2012). The definition applies to both, newly created firms or startups, and existing firms that have engaged into discovering new technology-based business opportunities within the context of existing or newly emerging market needs. This is why the TEBD profile adopts of a double perspective by helping students to acquire both entrepreneurial and intrapreneurial managerial skills and competences.

First semester
The key theme of the first semester is Technological Entrepreneurship and Management. The first semester develops the understanding of how technology, product and business development are linked together in order to create successful business opportunities with a global market reach. The focus is on technology entrepreneurship and management of innovation which are addressed from an business ecosystem perspective. The aim is development of a solid theoretical foundation as well as critical insights into the practical problems of value creation and value capture in technology-intensive business environments on a global scale. The students have the opportunity of: a) acquiring the skills to develop insights within the entrepreneurial applied research area; b) developing the competencies in technology innovation, entrepreneurship and new business development on a global scale in a more practical way, supported by a supervisor and business mentors, using all the resources of the local entrepreneurial ecosystem.

Students should start their own entrepreneurial projects/ventures in this semester and will be expected to participate in the Venture Cup Idea competition in order to get valuable feedback from professional business mentors and possibly win a financial award that will support the progress and establishment of their new ventures.

Second semester
The key theme of the second semester is Technological Innovation Management in a Global World. The second semester introduces the students to more fundamental disciplines of the program profile while enhancing their profile competencies within the context of intrapreneurship and innovation management practices of established organizations and existing startups aiming at a global market reach.

Furthermore, basic courses in product/process platform design and technological change processes will be offered. The course Globalisation and Entrepreneurship 1 continues the track from the previous semester. It provides the students with foundational skills in the understanding of the legal aspects as well as business aspects of global entrepreneurship. Thereby the students are provided with a strong basis of skills focusing on the development of technology-based business opportunities in established firms. Students will be expected to engage in intrapreneurial technology innovation projects in an established firm or an existing startup in order to implement and practice the theoretical knowledge and analytical skills acquired during the current and previous semester. Having started their own entrepreneurial projects/ventures in the previous semester students will also be encouraged to participate in the Venture Cup Startup competition in order to get valuable feedback from professional business mentors and possibly win a financial award that will support the growth of their new ventures.

Third semester
The key theme of the third semester is Value Creation in the Global Market Place. In this semester there is a stronger empirical component in the programme profile focusing on student involvement in company pro-jects or students’ own technology entrepreneurship projects or new ventures. The second option assumes that the students have already advanced their entrepreneurial project to the extent that they could be evaluated on the basis of how well they used the acquired knowledge and skills to grow their own new ventures.

During the semester the students will develop their competencies in entrepreneurship in a more practical way, supported by a supervisor and an external network of business mentors associated with the PDI program and the SDU Idea House in the Cortex park. The students can choose among a stronger empirical involvement in entrepreneurial activities or a stronger focus on a specific technology entrepreneurship and innovation research theme as a preparation for the Master Thesis in the next (last) semester.

The course Globalization and entrepreneurship 3 integrates internationalization theories, models of globalization, entrepreneurship and new digital business models. It constitutes a foundation for understanding international efforts of firms as well as the new global market conditions in which new products are developed, introduced and consumed.

The course Open Innovation provides an insight into the literature on open innovation, inter-organisational relations and market analyses. These particular themes are especially relevant in situations where a firm is operating in markets that are new or emerging. The course therefore combines new theories of innovation, entrepreneurship and market analysis.

Fourth semester

The last semester of the program is dedicated to working on a Master thesis. The thesis project should include three main aspects: technological/engineering aspect, entrepreneurial/business/marketing aspect and research aspect.

The project activities and final report document the student's competencies attained during his/her studies in the program profile. The Master thesis completes the education which offers an integrated perspective on technology entrepreneurship, innovation management and business management within the context of an exciting engineering education.

Read more about curriculum and subjects.

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