Curriculum & Course Descriptions


BS3006 Bioentrepreneurship

Course Coordinators: Prof Sten Albert Ohlson ( )

Academic Unit: 3 AU

Availability: Semester 2

Pre-requisite: None

Course Type: BS-Major PE, BMS-Major-PE

Language of instruction: English

Teaching hours: Lectures: 23 hours; Tutorials: 16 hours 

Learning Objective

Singapore is currently an exciting place for Bioentrepreneurship and the bioindustry is an area where many activities are taking place and where opportunities abound.  The huge capital and energy input into life sciences is a pillar for our country’s economy and it is a strong indication of the tremendous opportunity that is present in this field.  In this course, we will not only show you the structure of Bioentrepreneurship, but also impart the spirit and essence of it. 

Bioentrepreneurship and the launching of new ventures aims to create or build something new or different that has an impact on one’s dream and also on peoples’ lives and ultimately on the society. It will lead to new and improved products/services and create new jobs and added value for owners, investors and the society.  Starting up a bioventure usually requires more money than you have in the bank, more energy than you thought you had and more skills & know-how than you thought you needed.



This course is an exploration into the fundamentals behind Bioentrepreneurship.  Students learn to understand what Bioentrepreneurship is about; what the bioentrepreneurial journey entails; and perhaps most importantly, how they can become more bioentrepreneurial themselves. 

The lectures, interactive seminars and workshops will cover a broad range of issues such as creativity and innovation; the bioentrepreneurial mindset; investigating ideas & opportunities; developing business plans; attracting investments; and managing intellectual property.   There is a heavy emphasis on teamwork in the course assessment.  The focus of case studies, examples and student projects will be on bio-science and biotechnology related areas. All teaching is carried out in the English language.


Learning Outcome

-   Have good knowledge of the essential elements of Bioentrepreneurship including management, financing, regulatory- and quality issues, marketing and intellectual property (IP). Understand the challenges of being a Bioentrepreneur.

-       Be familiar with the current status of the bioindustry globally as well as in Singapore.

-       Have in-depth knowledge how to produce a business plan and develop skills to present it.

-       Have knowledge how to start a biocompany.

Student Assessment

Students will be assessed by:

1.     Team Assignment: Business plan (50%)

Students will work in teams of 3-6 members to produce a business plan based on a biotechnology idea chosen by the team. The business plan is to be submitted at the end of the course. The assignment will be graded on a team basis. 

  2.     Team Assignment: Group Presentation of Business Plan (20%)

Each team is to give a (maximum of) 20 minute presentation of their Business Plan.  An additional 5 minutes will be spent on Q&A. Each team is to prepare comprehensive power point slides for the presentation to potential investors. Each of the group members will present and participate in the Q&A. Grading will be based on individual performance. 

  3.     Group Presentation on Bioentrepreneur (20%)

Each team is to select a local Bioentrepreneur and his/her venture, and evaluate why the entrepreneur and the venture is successful or unsuccessful. The purpose is to gain insight into an entrepreneur’s reasons, strategies, intellectual properties, approaches and motivations for starting and growing the venture.  Evaluation criteria will include quality of content, application of themes discussed in class, depth and breadth of analysis and quality of presentation. A two page memo that summarizes the presentation content is required, where each team must submit before the final presentation starts. Each of the group members is to present and student will be assessed based on individual performance. 

  4.     Class Participation (10%)

Students will be assessed for class activity which will include demonstration of analytical capability, integrative thinking, interpersonal skills and humor. 


1.     Lecture notes and hand-outs

2.     Biotechnology Entrepreneurship Ed. C. Shimasaki, ISBN: 978-0-12-404730-3, Academic Press (2014)

2.     Handbook of Bioentrepreneurship Eds. H.Patzelt and T. Brenner, ISBN: 978-0-387-48343-6, Springer Science (2008)

3.    Innovation and Entrepreneurship in Biotechnology, an International Perspective J. Kapeleris and D. Hine, ISBN-10: 1 84376 584 5, Edward Edgar Publishing (2006)

4.     BioNova: Building a Biotech Company, P. Dobers and S. Wikander, ISBN: 91-44-03776-7, Student litteratur (2004)