Cookies on this website
We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. If you click 'Continue' we'll assume that you are happy to receive all cookies and you won't see this message again. Click on 'Find out more' to see our Cookie statement.

This course is for scientists and engineers who are thinking about commercialising their ideas, introducing them to the practicalities and the mindsets that they will need to be successful in developing their venture. Led by a successful research scientist and entrepreneur with experience of executive leadership, industrial R&D, investment management and strategic consultancy, who is now the Royal Society’s Entrepreneur in Residence at the University of Oxford.

Two researchers in discussion over papers and a PC screen


Success in a start-up business is significantly enhanced with an understanding of key entrepreneurial characteristics and competencies. This weekly, term-long course provides potential science/engineering entrepreneurs with the knowledge to help succeed in an entrepreneurial opportunity.

Topics covered include:

  • how creativity, opportunity and feasibility are best evaluated;
  • business strategies for new businesses;
  • achieving success in a new business;
  • financial aspects.

At the end of the course students will have skills and confidence to evaluate starting a science-based business, in addition to becoming more enterprising in how they approach their roles should they decide to work in start-up organisations.

The course will consist of lectures accompanied by practical casework and readings.

This course starts in Week 1 in October, then takes place every Thursday 2 -4.30pm until Week 9.

Those who successfully complete this course would be eligible to join advanced courses in Hilary and Trinity Terms.


It has been a very exciting process. I have learned a lot during the course.  -Plant sciences Postdoc  

The classes are always engaging, and I have really enjoyed this term’s mix of materials (lectures, case studies and simulations). - Biology DPhil 

I cannot recommend the course highly enough. Over time I increasing found confidence in developing business relevant skills and enjoyed meeting peers across divisions and from different disciplines. -Medical Sciences Postdoc 

Tailored to the interface of R&D and commerce providing the basic necessary tools for a science-based startup -Engineering D Phil 

It was a real pleasure attending this unique and valuable course -Medical Sciences Faculty


 By the end of these sessions students will have:

  • Explored how the business mind set differs from that of scientists
  • Understood the routes to commercialisation and market entry
  • Examined successful business strategy development
  • Considered what is required for good organisation and operational processes
  • Understand the basics of entrepreneurial finance
  • Have an appreciation of the pros and cons of different funding mechanisms


PGR and Research Staff 




Dr Alan Roth


Information about the next scheduled course, and how to apply for a place, are in our course programme.


A2, A3, B1, B2, B3, C1, D1, D3

The Researcher Development Framework (RDF) provides a framework for planning and supporting the personal, professional and career development of graduate students and research staff.