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Research Based Business Opportunities



Every business, small dedicated company and big multinational alike, once upon a time was established because their founders saw a business opportunity, or to be more precise: an entrepreneurial business opportunity. Entrepreneurial here indicates that a new firm may have a good chance, and perhaps even a better chance than established companies, of successfully exploiting the opportunity.

Understanding how to recognize and evaluate entrepreneurial business opportunities based on developments in science and technology constitutes the core of this course.

The starting point of this course is the book ‘Finding Fertile Ground: Identifying Extraordinary Opportunities for New Ventures’ by Scott Shane. This is illustrated and elaborated upon in a number of journal articles, case studies and assignments.

For PhD students and postdocs we will offer an alternative version to the course:
3 EC version – Atttendance and paper as a part of the teamwork

Course programme

The course will run from April 13 till June 26. The exam is on Monday June 29.

Plenary sessions will be on Monday afternoons. With your team you are required to work at the university on Thursday afternoon, when progress meeting with SBB staff will take place. You are invited to join the Interview with an Entrepreneur part of the Ventures course that starts Thursdays af 16.oo hrs.
You will need to spend about an additional 0,5 to 1 day a week on team work and preparations for upcoming sessions. For full time RBB students, the allocated time for teamwork is Monday morning and Wednesdays are suggested days for additional self-study and preparing individual contributions to the business plan. However, teams may choose other hours of the week.for these meetings and individuals may prefer other moments for their individual coursework.

The kick-off date will be April 13th at 14.00 h.

Learning outcomes

On successful completion of this course, you will be able to:
– explain the concept of “entrepreneurial opportunity”.
– apply this concept as a framwork for identifying opportunities.
– explain how and in which circumstances new companies may be better positioned than established companies to exploit business.
– illustrate the concept “entrepreneurial opportunity” with experiences of entrepreneurs.
– compose a set of opportunities based on current and expected developments in scientific research.
– compare such opportunities in respect of their feasibility and attractiveness for starting a business.


Intended for: MSc students, Ph.D. students, post-docs, university staff and others motivated for creating and working in research-based business.
Course fee:
no fee for university students;
– However a contribution of 20 Euro’s for the reader is required due to copy right payments
Euro 200 for PhD students, Euro 120 for the 3 EC version of the course,
Euro 500 for non-students.
If applicable, an invoice will be mailed at the beginning of the course.

Enrollment: For this course, it is not possible to register via USIS, instead register through our jot-form

Other RBB Courses

RBB Opportunities is part of a series of three courses with a course load of 5 EC each: RBB Ventures, RBB Planning, which can be followed together as well as separately. These courses arm students and (future) researchers with the basic knowledge of how to spot, assess and exploit an entrepreneurial, research-based business opportunity and have been desiged to lower the hurdles for students and researchers for getting involved in the process of starting high-tech ventures. This knowledge will be valuable for those who aspire to one day start their own company or who want to become involved in the process of company creation and development as tech transfer managers, business developers, business advisors, investment managers or serial entrepreneurs.

More information on our programme on Science & Research Based Business.