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Game for entrepreneurship,innovation with Stanford GSB?
Ayesha Banerjee, Hindustan Times
New Delhi, December 11, 2012
First Published: 17:02 IST(11/12/2012)
Last Updated: 17:05 IST(11/12/2012)

Doing things differently, uniquely - that’s what defines ‘innovation’ - the word the world has fallen in love with. And US university Stanford’s engineering and business schools’ faculty believes innovation can be taught, and the learning can help develop your entrepreneurial skills.

It’s a new programme launched online and will be taught through what Stanford calls an ‘engaging digital experience,’ developed by the Stanford Centre for Professional Development at the School of Engineering and the Graduate School of Business (GSB). 

Talking about the new Stanford Innovation and Entrepreneurship Certificate (marketing innovations and leading innovations), GSB dean Garth Saloner says, “We have been teaching classes like this for a while and have figured out what core concept innovators and young entrepreneurs need.” Targeting India was obvious. “It’s is a booming and fascinating economy. In Bangalore, I was struck by the blossoming of the entrepreneurial community.” This is the right opportunity, given the relationship of Stanford to Silicon Valley “and what we’ve learnt about innovation in that context and to bring the same ideas to the emerging thriving entrepreneurial community here,” Saloner adds.

On the need for doing such a course, Saloner says businesses today exist in an increasingly globally competitive environment and in order to succeed in that environment one has to have a source of competitive advantage and differentiation. “A key to that is to innovate, to do things that are different that nobody else has done.”

Participants can do a single course or earn the professional certificate from Stanford by completing any eight of 12 courses on prototyping, marketing, social media, innovation strategy, and entrepreneurship etc.  They will be taught by Stanford faculty, including instructors from the graduate school of business, the engineering school, the Hasso Plattner Institute of Design (the, as well as by Silicon Valley industry leaders, using highly interactive and occasionally unconventional methods.

Anyone can join. The people being targeted are both potential or nascent entrepreneurs and those with jobs within established larger companies where innovation is important. The programme is led by faculty directors Robert Sutton, a professor of management science and engineering at the School of Engineering, and Hayagreeva Rao, professor of organisational behavior and human resources at the Graduate School of Business, says an official release of the institute.

Ignite is another programme being offered by Stanford at Bangalore. “It’s an in-person course which involves part-time classes for eight weeks or so in the evenings or weekends. The certificate programme teaches innovators how to formulate, develop and commercialise their ideas. Participants will learn core business skills and experience working with a team to evaluate and develop ideas into a business plan.

To do the course...

For the Stanford innovation and entrepreneurship certificate

Tuition fee: US$995 for each course. Additional courses to be launched through 2012 and 2012. 
* Stanford ignite

Dates: July 27 to September 15, 2013  Time: Tuesday and Thursday evenings, 6 to 10 pm (dinner included) and most Saturdays from 9 am to 4 pm (lunch included)

Location: Bangalore

Tuition: US$8,350
Online application will be available in January 2013

Eligibility: Candidates  should be currently enrolled in masters, PhD, MD or post-doc studying non-business fields; or professionals with a bachelor’s or equivalent degree from a regionally accredited institution. The programme is intended for individuals who do not have graduate business training - eg an MBA)

For more information, go to

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