MBA Entrepreneurship & Innovation Curriculum and Course List
The Business Core modules cover vital economic and business administration expertise alongside up-to-date management and leadership tools and techniques. The Specialization modules allow participants to gain profound knowledge, expertise and competencies in a chosen function or industry.
Below, please find an overview of all modules taught during the MBA. Click on the module names for detailed content information.
Prof. Nikolaus Franke
Innovation means turning a creative new idea into a product or service that succeeds in the market. Therefore, successful innovation management requires technological excellence combined with profound business knowledge and entrepreneurial thinking. In our knowledge-based society, this combination is key to sustainable economic development.
The E&I Bootcamp marks the beginning of the specialization and provides both a kick-off and an overview of the different modules. Building on the experiences made during the Silicon Valley field trip, you will work on the definition and set-up of your own venture or innovation project. You will take a deep dive into creativity and ideation techniques. In addition, you will learn what it takes to make your innovative ideas come true: we will cover the lean start-up approach, including prototype-based customer discovery methods. Finally, you will get to know the Austrian start-up and innovation ecosystem and get a chance to connect with its key players.
Leveraging existing or accumulating new knowledge is key in the fields of new venture creation and innovation processes. In this module, you will learn where and how to look for innovative ideas, concepts, and solutions. We will discuss how to 1. unleash the creative potential within your organization, 2. open up innovation processes for external actors to contribute novel ideas and solutions, and 3. design collaborations between start-ups and corporates to foster innovation.
This module is dedicated to integrating the insights from the previous modules of the specialization and applying them to your project. You will pitch your project to an expert jury, and based on the feedback received, develop a detailed action plan on how to proceed.
In a digital and global economy, markets are becoming increasingly dynamic. New ventures and established companies alike face the constant challenge to commercialize innovations that show a distinct competitive advantage in meeting the needs of attractive customer groups. This module gives the students exposure to state-of-the-art methods to align new product development (NPD) and marketing activities to customer needs and competitive forces. We will discuss how these methods support in gaining customer insights for design, in spotting promising market segments, in determining appropriate revenue models, and in communicating the innovation in the digital space. We will primarily focus on approaches helping to leverage customer intelligence and market data to exploit new business opportunities.
Due to rapid technological progress and strong competition, many firms are nowadays confronted with quickly eroding competitive advantages. Innovation has therefore become key to sustaining firm success over time. In this module, participants will learn about the strategic dimension of innovation in firms: we will discuss how innovation has become an integral part of strategy making, how firms may gather “knowledge of the future” via corporate foresight activities and identify new market opportunities, how existing innovation methods (e.g. design thinking) can be embedded in a more encompassing process of strategic innovation management, how firms mitigate weaknesses by collaborating, and how they make can make sure to profit from their innovations (e.g. via complementary assets, patents, and standards).
Identification and analysis of all key dimensions of sustainable and digital innovation within established firms as well as new ventures: agile business processes and practices, developing business models for digital innovation, understanding mindsets, designing organizational structures enabling collaboration across functional and hierarchical lines, tapping new forms of organizing enabled by the digital revolution.
There are different sources of capital to finance a venture. At a first glance, they are relatively easy to differentiate and to use. However, there are many traps associated with those different sources and entrepreneurs should not run into these traps. Or as Vinod Koshla, a famous VC (Venture Capitalist) from Silicon Valley, puts it: “I would guess 70-85% of VCs add negative value to a startup in advising them” the question is, how to avoid the situation that a VC might add negative value. The module about financing your venture gives an answer to this and many more questions real entrepreneurs might have, using different forms of capital to finance their venture.
At the end of the MBA program, students have to write a master's thesis in order to receive the academic degree of Master of Business Administration (MBA). The intention of the master's thesis is to guarantee that the graduate of the MBA program is able to write scientific papers on his or her own.