INN520 Innovation and Entrepreneurship in practice in a regional context
Course description for academic year 2021/2022
Contents and structure
The main content of the course is a 10-week internship (full time workdays) in a startup firm, own student firm, or with an innovation project in a relevant firm/public sector. During the internship, the student will interact closely with the entrepreneurial team/research team/manager. Furthermore, the student shall perform entrepreneurial tasks, such as market studies, investor analysis, pitching for investors, technology testing and prototyping, development of business models and other relevant tasks for the firm. Through practice-based learning, the student experience real innovation and entrepreneurial tasks, and commercialization of technology and as such develop entrepreneurial competences and skills. We organize the internships in close collaboration with regional clusters and the entrepreneurial ecosystem.
Student entrepreneurs with an own business idea, may work and have internship in their own student firm. Student entrepreneurs will be followed up closely, and mentors from the ecosystem and HVL will be assigned. Part-time students may carry out their internship at their company working on internal innovation projects.
Exchange students will attend three introductory seminars about Norwegian society and economic life (three full days). These seminars will introduce: 1) Norwegian society, work-life and economic history, 2) Entrepreneurship and main industry clusters in Norway, characteristics and challenges, 3) Policies and programs promoting innovation and entrepreneurship (cluster programs, Incubators, entrepreneurship, regional innovation).
In parallel with the internships, students shall participate at three afternoon seminars with guest lecturers from industry. Here, we collaborate closely with the regional clusters and other regional actors, to organize the seminars.
- Has advanced knowledge of entrepreneurship and entrepreneurial practice in a regional context (Western Norway)
- Has advanced knowledge of the regional Ecosystems, interactions, actors and dynamics
- Is able to identify important challenges among entrepreneurial firms in different sectors and in the Entrepreneurial Ecosystem
- Is able to perform significant entrepreneurial tasks
- Is able to use own experiences with practice-based learning and to reflect critically of it
- Is able to analyze and reflect critically about the entrepreneurial practice in different industries, including entrepreneurial learning and strategies
- Has knowledge about critical challenges among entrepreneurial firms and can perform entrepreneurial tasks
- Is able to apply theoretical knowledge into practice, and apply multi-disciplinary knowledge in cross-disciplinary tasks
- Is able to reflect about own cross-cultural learning
Bachelor degree in engineering or natural sciences or business administration/social science
Motivation letter (maximum three pages).
In the motivation letter, the applicant shall describe their individual motivation for going abroad and working in an international internship. The applicant should describe their expectations and learning aims for the internship and the practical innovation/entrepreneurial work, and what they wish to learn from engaging in a foreign business and industry environment.
This course will accept maximum 10 exchange students per semester.
Recommended previous knowledge
Courses in entrepreneurship, innovation, business models, technology management at the bachelor or honours/master level
The course aims to provide students practice-based learning in entrepreneurial firms and knowledge of the entrepreneurial processes in a regional context. Students will be assigned a mentor in the internship firm and the course coordinator will follow up the student closely. The learning is student active, action oriented and interactive with the entrepreneur/manager and through performing entrepreneurial tasks. The learning arena is the internship firm, and the regional Ecosystem.
Students shall participate at introductory seminars (3), and afternoon seminars (3). At the seminars, students are expected to be active questioning, participating in discussions, and reflective.
The entrepreneur/manager in the internship firm (mentor) shall give oral feedback on how the student is handling/performing the entrepreneurial tasks, potential for improvement, personal mastery and development (dialogue in week 3, 6 and 9). At the end of the internship the entrepreneur shall provide a testimonial to the intern.
Students shall write a log/diary during the internship about their experiences and reflections. Students shall write one reflection report about own entrepreneurial learning and cross-cultural learning.
During the internship, students shall participate in groups at two reflection sessions in the afternoon (4-6 students together). The first reflection session is an introductory seminar about reflection in practice-based learning, including theory based analytic tools to strengthen the level of reflections and concrete guiding to reflective writing. The second reflection session will take place in the second part of the internship.
The following mandatory work requirements must be fulfilled in order for the candidate to present him/herself for examination:
- Compulsory internship in the startup/firm. Full working days (37,5 h) in 10 weeks.
- Compulsory participation at afternoon seminars
- Compulsory participation at two seminars on reflection and reflective writing
Course requirements are valid the examination semester and one following semester.
Assessment is based on the submission of one written assignment (40 %) and one oral exam (60%).
The student shall write one reflection report about own entrepreneurial learning and cross-cultural learning (10-12 pages).
The reflection report counts for 40 % of total assessment.
Individual oral exam - 40 minutes which counts 60 % of total assessment.
The written assignment must be completed two weeks after the internship and should be submitted digitally.
Grading scale A-F
Examination support material
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