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Lean LaunchPad Educators Programme

A new standard of excellence in experiential entrepreneurship in synthetic biology

​The past five years have seen a revolution in entrepreneurship practice.

We have seen a movement from static planning to dynamic experimentation that takes advantage of today’s faster pace of innovation and adaption. Business model innovation, customer centric business design, customer discovery, and minimum viable product experimentation have taken their place alongside technological innovation in the entrepreneur’s toolkit. The Lean LaunchPad entrepreneurship education curriculum provides an effective integrated approach that adapts these critical processes into an exciting learning journey for students and faculty alike, while helping extend the classroom into the business community and entrepreneurship ecosystem. Adopted by the National Science Foundation in the United States, and hundreds of universities world-wide, the curriculum has emerged as the new standard of excellence in experiential entrepreneurship education.

Programme overview

The Lean LaunchPad Educators programme is a two-day course designed for experienced entrepreneurship, engineering, and science faculty. It is also suitable for leaders of incubators and accelerators committed to adding value through substantive programming. It is a hands-on programme where you will experience the process, and be given the tools to create a curriculum and course plan you can put to immediate use.

Led by Jerry Engel of U.C.Berkeley, a co-creator of the curriculum with Steve Blank, and the National Faculty Director of the National Science Foundation’s I-Corps programme in the USA, which deploys the Lean LaunchPad method -- this programme will challenge you to rethink your approach to teaching technology commercialisation, innovation and entrepreneurship. The Lean LaunchPad emphasises planning before the plan and searching for a business model before execution. It leverages and compliments the emerging financing models for new ventures.

Who should attend

Faculty ready to challenge themselves to innovate, including:

  • Entrepreneurship or business educators
  • Engineering, design, and science faculty interested in preparing their students to commercialise innovation
  • Experienced entrepreneurs teaching or interested in teaching with University faculty
  • Leaders of Incubators and accelerators wanting to add substantive curriculum and processes
  • Technology transfer officers and any engaged in the commercialisation of research outputs.

Why Lean LaunchPad?

The Lean LaunchPad, taught at Stanford, Berkeley, Columbia, Caltech and adopted by the National Science Foundation, emphasises experiential learning, a flipped classroom and immediate feedback as a way to engage students with real-world entrepreneurship.

Students learn by proposing and immediately testing hypotheses. They get out of the classroom and talk to customers, partners and competitors and encounter the chaos and uncertainty of commercialising innovations and creating new ventures.

Your students will do, rather than plan to do. Unlike many approaches to entrepreneurship education, Lean LaunchPad does not rely on static case studies or fixed models; it challenges students to create their own business models based on information derived from personal engagement rather than secondhand market research, and to evolve them continuously to build stronger, scalable businesses.


Find out about the next programme and book your place