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PIER is pleased to announce its next PIER Start-Up Workshop “Business Modeling” for early-stage researchers (PhD students and Postdocs), taking place on 01 September 2022.
In this workshop, graduate students and scientists receive an overview of “state-of-the-art“ tools and methods used by entrepreneurs and companies worldwide. The participants learn how they can develop and design business models based on their own ideas or research results using the Business Model Canvas (BMC), the Value Proposition Canvas (VPC) and the Systems Thinking approach. The BMC is composed of nine key building blocks one can find in a business plan and allows the participants to quickly (re-)design their business models. The VPC offers a more detailed look at the two most important building blocks within the BMC – the value proposition and the customer segments – to ensure that the participants’ ideas provide actual solutions for customer problems they have identified. Systems Thinking then helps the participants to break down the individual processes needed in order to get their business to the market by means of a collaborative visualization technique.

Besides covering these topics, the participants get an overview of the business plan and learn how they can transfer their own business ideas, Business Model Canvas or research results into this more classical framework. Writing a business plan represents a special challenge that includes rules, which entrepreneurs and business professionals need to become familiar with and follow.

By using all these tools, the participants engage in an iterative process, in which they transfer their ideas into different business models and test whether these have the potential to be implemented as sustainable business ventures. Within a few hours, the students are equipped with the skills to identify their product’s or service’s unique selling propositions, to define their key target groups and to decide how the business should be structured. Since today’s lucrative products and services can all too soon become a thing of the past, these agile tools are also useful for experienced entrepreneurs to create offers of tomorrow and thereby actively shape the future of their companies. 

The workshop offers a mix of theoretical input as well as creative and practical group exercises, which encourage the participants to think and act like entrepreneurs when developing their value propositions, business models and organizations. By mixing theory and practice, a pleasant learning and working environment is created in which the participants can not only analyze their own research results/projects and ideas but also explore the possibility of becoming future (corporate) entrepreneurs.

Learning outcomes:

  • Becoming familiar with the Business Model & Value Proposition Canvas, Systems Thinking  approach and the classic business plan
  • Creating awareness for entrepreneurial thinking and acting 
  • Exploring the option of turning research results into actual business ventures
  • Developing different business models from one idea


Workshop: PIER Startup Bootcamp II: Business Modeling
Date: 01 September 2022, 09:00 am – 05:00 pm
Venue: Bahrenfeld research campus, bldg. 99, CFEL SR V

Registration is open until 25 August 2022: https://indico.desy.de/event/35444/
As the number of participants is limited, early registration is strongly recommended. Members of DESY and Universität Hamburg will be given preference.