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Goal: Provide knowledge and skills regarding innovation for students who plan to work in existing organizations at graduation or participate in policy issues related to innovation.

Who is Eligible: Graduate students from any school on campus in degree programs.

Overview: This certificate program offers a suite of courses that span Business School courses and the curricula of several colleges and schools at UW-Madison. The program emphasizes skills in innovation and creating social and economic value within existing organizations. This program differs from entrepreneurship because the emphasis is not on founding new firms. Instead, it prepares students to innovate in existing organizations, which is the likely career path for most graduates.

Students will develop skills in identifying products and services, market assessment, managing product design projects, intellectual property strategy, research and development portfolio management, individual skills in creativity, technology strategy, and organizational strategy including joint ventures and alliances.

The certificate builds on courses developed and offered over the past decade across campus. It permits students to have a more formal opportunity to accumulate an interdisciplinary and integrated body of knowledge related to envisioning and creating new products and services and ways to structure and lead innovative organizations and consider the role of innovation in society.

The program offers a portal to graduate students who anticipate working in organizations that depend on  innovation to compete in the marketplace and use innovation to create value for society more broadly.

A student who has completed the certificate will have good foundational skills to prepare an in-depth new product development plan for an existing organization or consider innovation challenges in society.

FAQs

Do I need to pay extra tuition to receive the certificates?

There is no additional tuition required to receive any of the certificates.

What is the basic design of these certificates?

You must take foundational courses in the Wisconsin School of Business. You may then complement that work with additional courses from the lists shown for each certificate.

For example, the Graduate Certificate in Strategic Innovation requires students to take MHR 715 (Strategic Management in the Life and Engineering Sciences) and at least one course from a set of advanced Wisconsin School of Business courses. The four-course certificate program may be completed with two other courses from the Wisconsin School of Business or elsewhere on campus from the selected list on course requirements.

In addition, you will be expected to participate in opportunities to apply the knowledge, such as the Schoof’s competition, the G. Steven Burrill Business Plan Competition, or other projects.

As one example, a law student who wants to work with small business or start-up clients might take these courses: MHR 722-Entrepreneural Management, Fin 757-Entrepreneurial Finance, LAW 854-Clinical: Law and Entrepreneurship, and LAW 953: Law and Entrepreneurship.

What is the difference between the two graduate level certificates?

Entrepreneurship

  • Focus on graduate student who will start a new venture, will work for a new venture in the near future, or wants to gain long-term entrepreneurship knowledge.
  • Students gain basic knowledge about designing, planning, and funding new ventures; assembling a founding team; completing legal forms for new ventures; determining the growth of young ventures; assessing intellectual property issues for start-ups; and understanding market assessment and development.
  • Good fit for student with strong interest in new-venture formation who wants to become effective in understanding entrepreneurial processes, the related skills, and the role of entrepreneurship in society.

Strategic Innovation

  • Focus on graduate student who will work on innovative projects in existing organizations.
  • Students gain knowledge about imagining and researching markets, managing new product development process in an existing organization, research and development, organizational creativity, business model innovation, intellectual property, and society-level innovation systems.
  • Good fit for graduate student with deep expertise—in science/technology or the arts, for example—who want to innovate in existing organizations.

Both

BOTH certificates emphasize the business context, and BOTH can be used to probe sustainability and social-mission goals.

Who is eligible for the two graduate certificates?

The graduate certificates are available to all University of Wisconsin-Madison graduate degree-seeking students (excluding special students).

Does the certificate allow me to register early for certain Wisconsin School of Business courses or use the Wisconsin School of Business placement services?

No. Business students pay a tuition surcharge to support these services, so certificate students should use the placement services of their home departments.

Can a graduate student get both the strategic innovation certificate and the entrepreneurship certificate?

Yes, but a student may not use the same advanced Wisconsin School of Business course to acquire two certificates (i.e., MHR 715 - Strategic Management of Innovation, MHR 722 - Entrepreneurial Management, and MHR741 - Technology Entrepreneurship cannot be counted for more than one certificate).

Can courses be taken pass/fail?

No, courses taken to fulfill certificate requirements cannot be taken pass/fail.

Dan Olszewski, Director, Weinert Center for Entrepreneurship*
John Surdyk, Director, Initiative for Studies in Transformational Entrepreneurship(INSITE)*

Russ Coff, Executive Director, Initiative for Studies in Transformational Entrepreneurship(INSITE), MHR*

Jon Eckhardt, Executive Director, Weinert Center for Entrepreneurship, MHR*

François Ortalo-Magné, Dean, Business

Randy Dunham, MHR*
Phil Greenwood, MHR

Phil Kim, MHR

Loren Kuzuhara, MHR
Chad Navis, MHR

Stephanie Jutt, Music
Shubha Ghosh, Law
Jeremy Foltz, AgEcon
Steven Cramer, Engr.

*Executive Operating Committee Consults as needed on ongoing operational issues

The certificate in strategic innovation requires a minimum of 12 credits, which includes the required foundation course, advanced innovation coursework, and electives from across the campus. The slate of coursework options available for fulfilling the certificate program is shown in the accompanying table. Students are strongly encouraged to participate in related non-credit innovation immersion experiences via competitions.

The foundation course has no prerequisites and is open to all graduate students on campus. A total of 12 credits is required. Students will: 1) take one required foundation course (MHR 715 - Strategic Management of Innovation); 2) choose at least three additional credits from a list of Wisconsin School of Business advanced innovation coursework; and 3) select up to six credits of additional courses from other elective coursework or advanced innovation coursework.

Required Foundation Coursework (3 credits):

  • MHR 715 - Strategic Management of Innovation (Spring)

Wisconsin School of Business - Advanced Innovation (Choose at least 3 credits from list):

  • MKT 737 – Developing Breakthrough New Products Practicum (Spring)
  • OTM 860 – Planning for Quality in New Services and Products (Odd Years)
  • MHR 722 – Entrepreneurial Management (Fall/Spring)
  • MHR 741 – Technology Entrepreneurship (Spring, Prior to Fall 2011 was MHR765)
  • RMI 650 – Sustainability, Environmental and Social Risk Management (Spring)

Other Elective Coursework (Up to 6 credits from other elective coursework can be counted towards the required 12 certificate credits):

School Courses
Business
  • ACCT 300/700* -- Accounting Principles/Financial Accounting (*restricted access)
  • GEN BUS 701 - Managing the Legal Environment
  • MHR 704 - Managing Behavior in Organizations  
  • MHR 705 – Human Resource Management
  • MHR 723 – Business Strategy (restricted access)
  • MKT 300/700* - Marketing Management (*restricted access)
  • MHR 977 - Emerging Entrepreneurship Technology
Law
  • LAW 751 – Patent Law
  • LAW 752 – Copyright Law
  • LAW 753 - Introduction to Intellectual Property Law
  • LAW 854 - Clinical Program: Law & Entrepreneurship
  • LAW 918 - Selected Problems International Law-Seminar
  • LAW 953 – Bus Org Sem: Law & Entrepreneurship
 L & S   
  • COMP SCI 638 - Starting a Software Company
  • COMP SCI 838 - Human Computer Interaction
  • LIS 710 - Research and Evaluation Methods
  • LIS 732 - Strategic Information Services (previously titled: Corporate and Specialized Information Services)
CALS
  • AAE/MHR 540-Intellectual Property Rights, Innovation and Technology
  • AAE 706 – Applied Risk Analysis
  • AAE 875 - Economics of Technology
  • LSC COM 305 – Industry Research Methods
  • LSC COM 270 – Communication in Life Sciences Industries (Previously offered as LSC COM 370 - Communication in Life Sciences Industries)
  • LSC COM 431 – Advertising in the Life Sciences
  • LSC COM 435 – Theory and Practice of Integrated Marketing Communication
  • LSC COM 625 – Risk Communication
  • LSC COM 700 - Colloquium in Life Science Communication
  • LSC COM 902- Public Opinion of Life Science Issues
  • STS 901 – Science, Tech, and Medicine in Society
Engineering
  • BME/IE 662-Design and Human Disability and Aging
  • BME 701 – Seminar in Biomedical Engineering
  • ME 549 Product Design
  • ISYE 671/OTM671/INFO SYS 671 - E-Business: Technologies, Strategies, and Applications
  • ISYE 691-Innovation Science
  • ISYE 961 - Research and Design in Home Care 
  • ME 349 - Engineering Design Projects
  • INTEREGR 601 - Process Innovation: Concept-Select-Commercialize

* A student may not use the same advanced Wisconsin School of Business course to acquire two certificates (i.e. MHR 715 - Strategic Management of Innovation, MHR 722 - Entrepreneurial Management, and MHR741 - Technology Entrepreneurship cannot be counted for more than one certificate).

The Graduate Certificate in Strategic Innovation does not prescribe any formal tracks or concentrations. Students are free to assemble a meaningful portfolio of courses given their own specific background and goals. Sample bundles follow:

Engineering student who wants to work in Product Development at a large corporation

  • MHR 715 - Strategic Management in Life and Engineering Sciences
  • OTM 860 - Planning for Quality in New Products and Services
  • BME/IE662-Design and Human Disability/Engineering
  • ME 549 - Product Design

Biochemistry student who wants to work in Product Development at a large corporation

  • MHR 715 - Strategic Management in Life and Engineering Sciences
  • MKT 740 - Emerging Issues in New Product Development
  • AAE/MHR - 540 Intellectual Property Rights, Innovation and Technology
  • AAE875 - Economics of Technology

Biomedical Engineering student who wants to work in Product Development at a large corporation

  • MHR 715 - Strategic Management in Life and Engineering Sciences
  • MKT 740 - Emerging Issues in New Product Development
  • BME/IE662- Design and Human Disability/Engineering
  • BME 701 - Seminar in Biomedical Engineering

MBA student who wants to lead technology-based product projects in a large corporation

  • MHR 715 - Strategic Management in Life and Engineering Sciences
  • OTM 860 - Planning for Quality in New Products and Services
  • MHR 723 - Business Strategy
  • MKT 700 Marketing Management

Click here to explore or enroll now in the Certificate in Strategic Innovation.

Contacts

For more information, please send an email to gradcertificateadmin@bus.wisc.edu.

Executive Operating Committee:

  • Russ Coff - Executive Director, Initiative for Studies in Transformational Entrepreneurship (INSITE)
  • Dan Olszewski - Director, Weinert Center for Entrepreneurship
  • John Surdyk - Director, Initiative for Studies in Transformational Entrepreneurship (INSITE)
  • Randy Dunham - Department Chair and Professor, Management and Human Resources
  • Jon Eckhardt - Executive Director, Weinert Center for Entrepreneurship

For specific information on advising resources within partner schools and colleges, please contact: