Business Technology

"Silicon Valley thinking” as Stanford searches for British STEM entrepreneurs

3 min read

12 March 2015

Former deputy editor

The Stanford Graduate School of Business has embarked on its first UK-teaching initiative, Stanford-Ignite London, which will search for talented British innovators across science, technology, engineering and mathematics sectors.

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The educational institution will provide Brits with a mixed delivery of teaching at the Canary Wharf hub, with some lessons taught in person and others beamed from California in full HD.

The programme works on a part-time basis over ten weeks and is designed to provide STEM innovators with the guidance on how to make their business ideas a commercial success, drawing upon connections and culture from Silicon Valley.

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Stanford-Ignite London will also explain to budding entrepreneurs the key management and practical aspects of taking a venture forward, as tutors will include staff members that teach the school’s MBA programmes and also industry experts and mentors from across the UK and globally.

In November, Real Business spoke to Jack Hidary, an adviser at Google, who explained that it’s not just about the entrepreneur, but also the ecosystem around them. Seemingly the new Stanford scheme could provide a nurturing environment in a way that’s been demonstrated by Tech City and Silicon Roundabout.

Outside of London, however, we’re seeing more of a digital focus from companies across the UK. Digital Catapult announced on 11 March that it is opening up digital innovation centres in Brighton, Yorkshire and North East & Tees Valley, while something of a War of Tech Cities has been declared.

Some participants will receive full scholarships, with participants admitted based on “excellence in their field, drive for innovation and potential to create world-changing impact.”

Alternatively, the course will cost around £6,500 and is open to “any technical professional with a bachelor’s degree and professional experience, or graduate students currently pursuing a masters, MD, PhD, Post-doc or other non-business related qualification.”

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Bethany Coates, assistant dean for global innovations programmes at Stanford Graduate School of Business, said: “Britain’s rich history of science and innovation make it a natural choice for our new programme. We hope that by marrying this with our well-known business acumen and Silicon Valley thinking, we can really help to develop nascent ventures and new lines of business within existing corporations.

“If you are a talented individual with science and technology experience, who has been sitting on a promising idea, this programme provides a vital toolkit.”

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