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The World of Entrepreneurs


Admission requirements

Required course(s):

None. Please note that 100-level courses do not mean “less work” but “less preparation” (as in no prerequisite courses needed). This is not a course for students who do not have time to study!

Recommended course(s):

Academic writing


“Innovation is the specific instrument of entrepreneurship. The act that endows resources with a new capacity to create wealth.” — Peter Drucker, Innovation and Entrepreneurship (1985)

This 100-level course will introduce you to entrepreneurs and their positive, disruptive impact on society. Entrepreneurs do not have special talents, except in their skill in identifying and meeting needs. Although most people are familiar with a few famous entrepreneurs -- Mohammed Yunus, Elon Musk, Teun van de Keuken (Tony's Chocolonely) et al. -- far fewer people know how the world of entrepreneurs works, how they fail, the role of teamwork, and other important factors explaining the difference between hype and reality.

In this course on Social and Business Entrepreneurship (SBE), we will discuss and analyze how non-profit and for-profit enterprises compete to produce products (goods or services) that create value for society as well as rewarding the entrepreneur. Thus, we will not be focussing on governments (unless they are competing) or charities that rely on subsidies. At the end of this course, you will know more about this world, its successes and failures. In later courses in the SBE minor, you can apply these ideas to experiment in creating your own SBE products.

NB: We study both non-profit social enterprises and for-profit business enterprises.

Course Objectives


  • Explain the value creating mechanisms of social or business entrepreneurship

  • Identify a challenge, investigate the innovation ecosystem, and evaluate potential solutions.


  • Discriminate among discovery, development, and adding value

  • Explain the tensions among monopoly rents, innovation and social welfare


Timetables for courses offered at Leiden University College in 2021-2022 will be published on this page of the e-Prospectus.

Mode of instruction

The course is taught through two-hour seminars. Students will be expected to participate in both large and small group discussions; present and defend their ideas within an academic setting; and take part in group projects. The instructor will facilitate and ensure the efficient running of the discussion, but students are responsible for its quality.

Assessment Method

  • Class participation: 10% (continuous weeks 1-7)

  • Study team: 10% (continuous weeks 1-7)

  • Individual presentation: 10% (due week 5)

  • Peer critiques: 2 x 10% each (due week 6)

  • Group project & presentation: 15% (due week 7)

  • Individual essay: 35% (due reading week)

Reading list

Around 20 academic and popular articles (approx 250-300 pages)


Courses offered at Leiden University College (LUC) are usually only open to LUC students and LUC exchange students. Leiden University students who participate in one of the university’s Honours tracks or programmes may register for one LUC course, if availability permits. Registration is coordinated by the Education Coordinator,


David Zetland (
Leiden University College, Room 4.37