We are happy to announce the following 2 programs on entrepreneurship will be held from September to October 2024. Sign up to find out what industry thinks about your technology, or if you are just interested to know what entrepreneurship is all about.

Application for the 2024 program is now open!

Deadline: August 18

FY2024 Program

Intro Course     ▶ Details and Application

Date: Sep 27
Target: Those who would like to learn about entrepreneurship

5-day Workshop     ▶ Details and Application

Date: Sep 27-29, Oct 11, Oct 25
Target: Those who would like to learn more deeply about how to approach commercializing technologies

*The Intro Course and the 5-day Workshop might have overlapping content. Generally, participants will enroll in one program or the other, but not both.


About Instructors

Instructors are part of the U.S. National Science Foundation I-Corps TM Program. The I-Corps Program is a U.S. national effort to provide mentors and funding to university researchers to develop technologies that benefit society.


Voices of the Participants in 2023

▶ What were your expectations for the program?

My expectations were to learn more about the lean startup process in entrepreneurship. Most of my experience is in academia and I didn’t know what entrepreneurship involved, what questions are asked, what people focus on, etc. So I came into the program very open to new experiences, but overall hoped that I would be able to test go in an test some ideas that I have to see if the entrepreneurship route might be right for me.

▶ What did you learn most from the program?

I learned from the lean startup program that entrepreneurship is hypothesis driven very much like science. It was unexpected to be honest. I learned to work through some of uncertainties I had and simply tackle the questions that I had head on. The method of testing hypotheses I had were different in how I tackle scientific questions, but once I got through the process it was surprisingly enjoyable. I also learned that the members of your team are incredibly important, and I was lucky enough to have a good team that I could bounce ideas off of. Having people who are just as driven and focused on the same questions that you want to answer was critical in making the program a positive experience.

▶ How would you recommend the program to other researchers and students?

I would recommend the program to anyone who wants to learn more about startups/entrepreneurship and willing to see how research questions are developed and solved from an entrepreneurship point of view. I found it an enjoyable experience mainly because I learned and sharpened skills that I don’t always use in the lab. Skills such as time management, networking, and communication were all necessary in the program. I think communication to different types of people (e.g., occupation, field, industry/academia) was one of the biggest skills that I worked on during the program.


▶ What were your expectations for the program?

Before joining the program, I anticipated gaining a comprehensive understanding of the Lean methodology and how it applies to startups. Specifically, I hoped to learn practical strategies for validating business ideas, identifying customer needs, and efficiently allocating resources. Additionally, I expected to engage in hands-on exercises and receive personalized guidance from experienced mentors to refine my startup concept and execution strategy.

▶ What did you learn most from the program?

The program exceeded my expectations in several ways, but the most valuable takeaway for me was understanding the importance of understanding the specific needs, pain points, and preferences of our ideal customers. By systematically conducting interviews, surveys, and market research, I honed my ability to pinpoint the precise demographic or niche that would derive the most value from our product or service.

▶ How would you recommend the program to other researchers and students?

I wholeheartedly recommend this program to fellow students who are interested in entrepreneurship and innovation. The hands-on approach, combined with expert guidance and mentorship, offers a unique opportunity to transform theoretical knowledge into real-world results. Whether you are an aspiring entrepreneur looking to launch your first startup or a student interested in working for a startup company, this program equips you with the tools, resources, and support network necessary to succeed in today's competitive landscape.




If you have any questions, please feel free to contact bd@oist.jp.


Sponsored by OIST Innovation

Co-sponsored by the Office of the Dean of the Graduate School