96-815 Innovation and Entrepreneurship
This course focuses on entrepreneurship and innovation from the vantage point of high-tech companies in Silicon Valley. We will explore these topics in the context of four phases of a business. The Creation Phase - focusing on founding an entrepreneurial start-up in the dynamic high tech arena. The Scaling Phase - focusing on growing a venture and the challenge of managing this often overlooked stage where startup companies undergo “B”, and “C” rounds of funding to fuel their growth to a liquidity event. Sometimes businesses go through the Supernova Phase where revenues grow dramatically. This is often followed by a Reinvention Phase - when established corporations attempt to regain their growth trajectory through innovation.
We will learn directly from entrepreneurs, angel investors, and venture capitalists from Silicon Valley to learn, first hand the challenges of conceiving, creating, and funding a new venture. Senior executives will discuss the issues involved in managing and growing companies to a liquidity event, and then the eventual challenge of reinventing a corporation. Augmenting this, in tutorials, we will discuss the latest literature and explore dynamic strategic and organizational frameworks to put this experience in context. To learn the practical skills necessary the course team project will be based an on real life innovation involving the co-creation of a new line of business sponsored by firms at these different phases.