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The theory and practice of entrepreneurship

Entrepreneurship is considered one of the main drivers of economic growth and social change, entailing the market introduction of innovative products or services. Today all organizations recognize the challenges a rapidly changing marketplace presents. An entrepreneurial orientation allows firms, large and small, old or new, to react to these challenges in the pursuit of business opportunities. In order to achieve that, firms require individuals capable of identifying or creating business opportunities in their environment, conceiving a business model to capitalize on such opportunities, leveraging the resources necessary to implement the business model, managing across functional boundaries, fostering a culture of innovation, leading entrepreneurial teams, and creatively engaging with a dynamic context.

Learning objective

The objective of this course is to foster the development of the entrepreneurial competencies of students interested in creating a new venture (entrepreneurship) or assisting organizations in developing new business opportunities (intrapreneurship).

Course description

The course is envisioned as a venture-creation simulation. Thus, the students will develop their entrepreneurial competencies through an experiential, context-relevant learning experience. For that, we will mix a basic set of lectures (20%) with the development of an entrepreneurial project in teams (80%). Classroom activities and assignments will lead the teams in the development and completion of their projects.

The course follows the new venture lifecycle, from the initial conceptualization of a business idea, to its planning, funding and exit strategies. Through that process it integrates fundamental theory and practical application designed to develop the competencies needed to grow a competitive and enduring enterprise; that is, one with an innovative, value-driven competitive advantage.

Course methodology

From a methodological perspective, this course is based on the belief that entrepreneurship cannot be taught relying on traditional forms of instructions only, but has to be assimilated through real experiences. Indeed, such is the agreement in the entrepreneurial education scholarly literature. Hence, the course follows an action-oriented educational approach, which allows students to familiarize themselves with the activities of the entrepreneurial process, developing specific entrepreneurial competencies (skills, abilities, knowledge and attitudes) in each of its phases. The students will need to work outside of the classroom finding customers to talk to, information regarding the firm's cost structure, funding sources or support infrastructures (incubators, grants, seed investment), potential allies, etc. All this information and knowledge will be progressively integrated in the project via class activities and assignments.

Course evaluation

The evaluation will focus on the development of the entrepreneurial project.

Two pitches/presentations will take place at the middle and at the end of the course, worth 25% and 35% respectively.

A business plan must be submitted in support of both pitches. However, only the final submission will be graded. The final business plan is worth 20% of the grade.

Classwork and homework count for 10% of the final grade each.

Course requirements

The course has no formal pre-requirements. Some familiarity with marketing research and/or financial management is recommended but not essential.

Suggested class size

24 students (teams should have between 3 to 4 members).


The entrepreneurial projects are part of an academic exercise. Thus, they do not need to be implemented once the course is completed, nor is it necessary for the ideas to have been in development before the course.

It is possible to work in a business idea existing outside the course as long as: the whole team is also part of the project/firm outside the classroom or all the members agree that their work carries no implications aside the strictly academic. To be precise, that they give up any claim on the way their work might impact on the project/firm once the course is completed.

Since this is a time-constrained, class-based venture creation simulation, the quality of the idea is not an evaluation criterion. However, the ideas must be original and the business model developed should be able to competitively enter the market, were it to be implemented. Relevant evidence ought to be provided to prove the latter hypothesis.

Primary-source validation is essential for the successful completion of the course. Hence, at least some of the group members should have time to work on the project outside of class hours (interviewing customers, running surveys, obtaining quotes for materials and resources, etc.). With this in mind, it is advised that the teams work on projects close to their area of expertise.

Social and sustainable business models are encouraged when exploring potential project ideas.


Reading material will be provided throughout the course.

There is no textbook as such, but the students can follow:

Neck, H. M., Neck, C. P., & Murray, E. L. (2016). Entrepreneurship: the practice and mindset. SAGE Publications.

Morris, M. H., Kuratko, D. F., & Covin, J. G. (2010). Corporate entrepreneurship & innovation. Cengage Learning.

Alemany, L., & Andreoli, J. J. (Eds.). (2018). Entrepreneurial Finance: The Art and Science of Growing Ventures. Cambridge University Press.


Name: The theory and practice of entrepreneurship 
Teacher: Javier A. Rodriguez-Camacho (Gastdozent)
Contact person: Jaroslaw Kornowicz
Level of study:
Course language: English
Term: winter term  18.11.2019 - 25.11.2019 und 02.12.2019 - 06.12.2019 (Blockseminar)
Organization: Managerial Economics
Link to PAUL: Link
Material: All information and material will be provided via the eLearning platform.
Link to the Course Catalog: Link
Evaluation: -

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