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Innovating Health and Well-being through Entrepreneurship


Deze informatie is alleen in het Engels beschikbaar.

Disclaimer: due to the coronavirus pandemic, this course description might be subject to changes. For the latest updates regarding corona virus, please check this link.

Topics: Health care, wellbeing, design thinking, innovation, co-creation, prototyping, team building, entrepreneurship, public speaking.

Medicine: public health, lifestyle medicine
Psychology: wellbeing
Business administration: entrepreneurship

Skills: Design thinking skills, Co-creation, (Rapid) prototyping, Teamwork skills, Presenting.

Admission requirements

This course is an (extracurricular) Master Honours Class aimed at talented Master’s students. Admission will be based on academic background, GPA and motivation.


During this course, students form multidisciplinary teams. Each will identify a challenge in health and wellbeing and will work on innovative (business) ideas or solutions to address these challenges. To inspire students, challenges will be provided by profit and non-profit organisations, such as insurance companies, pension funds and local government. The participants’ innovations should aim to further health and wellbeing. Participants are expected to create solutions that contribute to health and wellbeing while using co-creation, design thinking, and rapid prototyping.

To enable participants to achieve this, they receive inspirational lectures about, e.g., changes in wellbeing, lifestyle, health and health care organisation and stakeholders, as well as online instructions on innovation techniques and methods. This will allow them to fall in love with the problem underlying their challenge and develop suitable and attractive solutions. In coaching and team sessions they will develop their innovation skills and their proposed solution. Participants co-design, validate and test ideas at each stage with prospective consumers. This means that this is a high-paced, hands-on course that includes quite a lot of practical work including interviews and a focus group. By the end of this course, participants will have gone through the first phases of an innovation trajectory.

Course objectives

Upon successful completion of this course, students will have:

  • acquired insights in teamwork processes as well as insight into their own teamrole;

  • gained scientific insights about health, prevention and lifestyle interventions;

  • gained insights in the processes and factors underlying wellbeing;

  • gathered basic understanding of the innovation cycle for need-driven ideation and what this means in the context of health care (design thinking);

  • have practiced the first phases of innovation cycle according to a design-thinking cycle;

  • have experienced comprehensive learning on developing a user-centric, demand-driven idea, validated by co-creation and repetitive interviews;

  • have gone through development methods (rapid prototyping) for iterative prototyping;

  • have learned soft-skills (presenting, pitch training, leadership and management) to communicate with stakeholders, investors and business partners.


The program will look as follows (NB changes may occur depending on availability):

Week 1:
Monday, 4 April (17:15 – 18:15) (PLNT)
Introduction to the course

Thursday 7 April (19:30 – 21:00) (LIPSIUS building, room 307)
Health & team building
Assignment 1: Get organized

Week 2:
Monday 11 April (17:15 – 18:15) (PLNT)
Getting organized

Thursday 14 April (19:30 – 21:00) (Leyden Academy Poortgebouw, south entrance, room 0.15)
The environment and context of health and wellbeing
Assignment 2: Defining your scope and ecosystem

Week 3:
Monday 25 April (17:15 – 18:15) (PLNT)
Define scope and understand ecosystem

Thursday 28 April (19:30 – 21:00) (Leyden Academy Poortgebouw, south entrance, room 0.15)
Participatory approaches, inclusive design and how to interview beneficiaries
Assignment 3: Getting to know your beneficiary

Week 4:
Monday 9 May (17:15 – 18:15) (PLNT)

Thursday 12 May (19:30 – 21:00) (Leyden Academy Poortgebouw, south entrance, room 0.15)
Innovating in health and wellbeing, involving stakeholders
Assignment 4: Choose your intervention logic
Draft group report Diamond 1: Understand

Monday 16 May (17:15 – 18:15) (PLNT)
Intervention logic

Thursday 19 May (19:30 – 21:00) (Leyden Academy Poortgebouw, south entrance, room 0.15)
Ideation in health and wellbeing
Assignment 5: Ideate and select
Assignment 6: Assumption testing

Week 6:
Monday 30 May (17:15 – 18:15) (PLNT)
Solution and assumption testing

Thursday 2 June (19:30 – 21:00) (Leyden Academy Poortgebouw, south entrance, room 0.15)
Rapid prototyping in health and wellbeing
Draft group report Develop (diamond 2)

Week 7
Thursday 16 June (19:30 – 21:00) (Leyden Academy Poortgebouw, south entrance, room 0.15)
Innovative solutions in health and wellbeing
Organize your experiments and focus group

Week 8
Monday 20 June (17:15 – 18:15) (PLNT)
Pitching workshop

Thursday 30 June (19:30 – 21:00)
Final pitching
Compiled group report
Group video and story
Individual portfolio/journal


Monday lectures: PLNT
First Thursday seminar: LIPSIUS building, room 307,
then Leyden Academy Poortgebouw, south entrance, room 0.15

Course load

This course is worth 5 ECTS, which means the total course load equals 140 hours:

  • Lectures: 7 lectures of 1 hr (7 hrs);

  • Seminars: 7 seminars of 1.5hrs (participation is mandatory, 10,5 hrs);

  • Excursion: if COVID-19 allows 1 excursions of 4 hours (4 hrs);

  • Literature reading: 2 hours/week (16 hrs);

  • Practical work: 3 hours/week (24 hrs);

  • Preparation for practical work, coach sessions and teamwork: 3,5 hours/week (25);

  • Assignments (group report on 3 diamonds), individual journal and presentation: 50,5 hours.


The assessment methods will look as follows:

Individual assessment:

  • 10% Active participation - All weeks

  • 20% Weekly coaching sessions 8-10 All weeks

  • 30% Individual portfolio 8-10 28 June

Group assessment:

  • 30% Group report, which includes:

  • Understand ecosystem and beneficiaries

  • Develop a solution and test your assumptions

  • 10% Group video and story

Reading list

Among other sources (both video, online assignments and articles), these include:

  • Brown T (2008). Design thinking. Harvard Business Review, 86(6), 84-92.

  • Brow, T (2009). Change by design: how design thinking transforms organizations and inspires innovation. New York: Harper

  • Lambooij, M.S., Hummel, M.J. Differentiating innovation priorities among stakeholder in hospital care.BMC Med Inform Decis Mak 13, 91 (2013).

  • Ledderer L, Kjær M, Madsen EK, Busch J, Fage-Butler A. Nudging in Public Health Lifestyle Interventions: A Systematic Literature Review and Metasynthesis. Health Education & Behavior. 2020;47(5):749-764. doi:10.1177/1090198120931788

  • Peters D, Ahmadpour N, Calvo RA. Tools for Wellbeing-Supportive Design: Features, Characteristics, and Prototypes. Multimodal Technologies and Interaction. 2020; 4(3):40.

Other possible literature will be announced in class or via Brightspace.

Brightspace and uSis

Brightspace will be used in this course. Upon admission students will be enrolled in Brightspace by the teaching administration.

Please note: students are not required to register through uSis for the Master Honours Classes. Your registration will be done centrally.


Submitting an application for this course is possible from Monday 31 January up to and including Sunday 13 February 2022 23:59 through the link on the Honours Academy student website.

Note: students don’t have to register for the Master Honours Classes in uSis. The registration is done centrally before the start of the class.


Marije Blok:
Betty Huerta:

Leyden Academy on Vitality and Ageing
Rijnsburgerweg 10
2333 AA Leiden
Tel. 071-5240960