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DM 881 – Tech Entrepreneurship & Innovation

Course Objectives

Technology-based entrepreneurship involves much more than having a good business idea and writing a solid business plan. This course will introduce new venture creation as a process intimately connected to new product innovation and design. The successful introduction of a new product or service within an existing or new business requires several important steps: identification, evaluation, and selection of opportunities; planning and financing the new venture or project; and executing the new venture or project plan. A combination of lectures, assignments, and experienced guest speakers will be used to explore each of these steps in a practical manner that will be interesting and useful to any professional engineer, entrepreneur, or manager.

Course Leader: Dominic Lim, Ivey Business School, Western University

Course Description and Class Process

The course will generally be taught using the case method. This 3-step learning process requires participants in the course to first read and prepare individually a case prior to each class, second to discuss their analyses in small learning teams, and then third bring the results of their group’s discussions to class for further discussion and analysis. In this highly effective learning method, the responsibility for learning rests primarily with the student, not the teacher. The instructor’s role is that of facilitator and discussion leader. We will discuss several cases each day. During the day, just under an hour has been allocated for individual preparation of the second and third cases, and a further 30 minutes for learning team discussion. You will have to prepare the first case of the day in the evening before class.


Module 1 – Entrepreneurial Process and Starting Up

As a foundation for understanding the process of starting and growing a venture, in this module we will focus on key elements of the entrepreneurial process pertaining to starting up (the processes for “searching” and “screening” business ideas and then the development of those ideas in the “planning,” “setup” and “startup” of new ventures).  Students will experience the entrepreneurial process through cases, and various experiential learning assignments.

Module 2 – Innovation and High Growth

The second module focuses on the various innovation concepts (e.g., disruptive innovation and value innovation) as a foundation to create a high growth company, as well as the issues pertinent to scaling up. Through a series of case studies, readings and shared experiences, we’ll build an integrative perspective of creating and managing a high growth company.

Required Reading

The Course Pack will include the cases and relevant readings.


There are no formal prerequisites other than those for the programme as a whole. As such, we assume that you have no previous entrepreneurship experience, however we recognize that some students may have more exposure to the subject area than others.

Course Grading

Grades will be calculated on the basis of the following:

  • Contribution (Individual) – 30%: Participation in class discussion (the quality, not quantity, of your discussion, questions and answers) will contribute 30% to your course grade. Quality is measured by the extent to which a contribution moves the discussion of the case forward; it can include a relevant example from work experience, a question that captures a key issue in the case, or an answer to that question.
  • Team Learning Experiences (in-class team learning assignments) – 30%: Throughout the two modules, you will complete various tasks based on the assigned case and present your solutions to the class. 
  • Entrepreneur Interview (individual assignment) – 40%: At the end of the first module there will be an individual assignment (Entrepreneur Interview). For this assignment, you will find and interview a tech entrepreneur who you did not know before, and provide a written analysis of what you learned about starting and managing a technology-based startup.

Biography of Course Leader

Dominic Lim

Dominic Lim joined the Ivey Business School in July 2014. Before returning to Ivey, he was a faculty member at Goodman School of Business, Brock University in Niagara, Ontario, and USC Marshall School of Business in Los Angeles, California. He taught entrepreneurship and innovation courses such as new venture creation, managing growth, business planning, and corporate entrepreneurship & innovation at undergraduate, graduate, and executive levels.

Prior to his academic career, Dominic worked as a management consultant in Cambridge, UK, one of the most active entrepreneurial clusters in Europe, and counselled many startups sprouting up from Cambridge University’s prestigious engineering and science labs, as well as multinational companies including Vodafone and Samsung. In 2000, he co-founded NeoGenius, an IT startup in Seoul, Korea that provided the B2B e-business software package and consulting services for companies in textile, chemistry, and auto manufacturing industries including LG-Caltex and Hyundai Motor Company. He also worked in the IT consulting industry in various capacities. He currently serves on the advisory board of several startups.

Dominic holds a Ph.D. degree in Business Administration from Ivey. He received his MBA from Cambridge University in the United Kingdom where he was a British Chevening Scholar, and BS (Computer Engineering) from Seoul National University, Korea.