From PhD to Innovator


This workshop is organized together with our partner institutions:

  • TU Dortmund
  • Ruhr-Universität Bochum
  • Westfälische Wilhelms-Universität Münster
  • Universität Duisburg-Essen

Ignite your entrepreneurial spirit! We invite you for a two-day innovation workshop to discover your entrepreneurial skills and develop ideas for a potential business case. The workshop is tailored to researchers of all disciplines and is led by professional innovation coaches.



Personality-based Competencies
  • Self-reflection about one’s own (entrepreneurial) expertise
  • Entrepreneurial success stories
  • Characteristics and abilities of an entrepreneur
Meet the Entrepreneurs
  • Keynote talks by startup founders or visits to a startup in the region
  • Visits to an incubator/coworking space
  • Networking session with entrepreneurs from the region

Design Thinking
  • Understanding the problem space: Getting to know the user and building empathy
  • Finding human-centred solutions: Identifying the problem, developing a solution, assessing the ideas
  • Prototyping & Testing: Building a prototype and testing the critical function


Our workshops are tailored to PhDs and postdocs of all disciplines, as well as early-career researchers and academic staff.

Our workshops are held in English. They are intended for participants at level B2 or higher of the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages.

We use the Zoom video conferencing software for our online workshops and webinars.

Participation in our workshops and webinars is free of charge.

No prior knowledge or experience in the areas of entrepreneurship, startups or other business ventures is necessary. A genuine interest in these topics is sufficient!

You will receive a confirmation email approx. 14 days before the beginning of the workshop. Make sure to check your SPAM folder. This email will include the login data for Zoom and the login for the event page, where you can access the workshop’s agenda. If the workshop is full, you will be placed on a waiting list and notified if a place becomes available. If you have not received a confirmation, you may apply again for a workshop scheduled for a different host city.

It is important to us that the workshops bring together a diverse group of participants from different disciplines and universities. We currently admit 35 participants per workshop. If all places are filled, we will place you on our waiting list and inform you if a place becomes available. You can find out more about our terms and conditions here.

You will receive a certificate of participation upon successful completion of the workshop. If you could not attend the full workshop, you are not eligible for a certificate.

Yes, our workshops are aimed at researchers who have not started a business, but want to explore their entrepreneurial potential. You can participate in the workshop even if you do not have a concrete idea of how to translate your research into a business venture.

Our workshops are open to researchers of all disciplines. We believe that every research field has great potential to enrich society with innovative ideas. Furthermore, business ideas developed by interdisciplinary teams are more successful in the long term.

In order to guarantee the best workshop experience for all participants, please make sure you are present for the entirety of the workshop. You’ll receive your certificate of participation after having successfully participated in the whole workshop.

You will be able to download your participant handout 1–3 days after the workshop via the login details provided in the confirmation and follow-up emails.

If you have difficulty registering online, try using a different browser. If you are still unable to register online, please send an email to:

You can write an e-mail to youngentrepreneurs (at)

You will receive a detailed agenda before the workshop, after your registration has been confirmed.


Technische Uni­ver­si­tät Dort­mund
Centrum für Entre­preneur­ship & Transfer (CET)
Exzellenz-Start-up Center.NRW
Emil-Figge-Str. 80, 2.OG
44227 Dort­mund


Hanna Sänger

Participant Management

+49-030 609 8839 776

Sponsored by
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BASF the chemical compony logo
federal ministry of edu and research logo