Global Entrepreneurship week in the KU School of Business will support the development of MoCoLab

Global Entrepreneurship Week (GEW) takes place one week each November to celebrate, encourage and inspire entrepreneurship around the globe.  GEW was launched in 2008, and today consists of tens of thousands of events and activities in over 130 countries.

For the past 4 years, KU has held events on campus as part of this global celebration to further develop the entrepreneurial mindset among the University community.  In November 2013, the KU School of Business will again be an active participant in GEW.

This year, the proposal is to focus KU’s GEW efforts on driving entrepreneurial activity within the state’s most underserved populations, specifically rural areas and depressed urban communities.  These locations often lack the resources (both human and technological), and would benefit from some dedicated student thinking on how to address these challenges in order to drive economic growth.  The 2013 GEW event will consist of a competition where student teams develop plans for how to drive entrepreneurship in underserved Kansas communities, utilizing the MoCoLab.  In addition to the competition where final presentations would be given by student teams, a short panel of social entrepreneurs and a casual networking reception/lunch.

Event Objectives:

  • Unlock and engage the entrepreneurial mindset among all KU students
  • Encourage cross campus collaboration and interdisciplinary approaches to idea development and problem solving
  • Provide a forum for connecting entrepreneurial thinking to civic engagement
  • Support idea of “entrepreneurship for all” by focusing on underserved communities and populations

Event Background & Details:
Recently, a KU Strategic Initiatives Level II Grant was proposed and approved to create a “Mobile Collaboratory (MoCoLab) for Civic Engagement”.   This mobile laboratory (a refurbished 1972 Airstream trailer, fully outfitted with the latest technology, WIFI, etc) aims to foster collaboration between communities and KU experts/resources in a variety of fields (health, education, arts, design, etc).  A number of KU schools and departments have expressed interest in using this resource to connect KU and Kansas communities through projects and research, and Global Entrepreneurship Week is an opportunity to engage the Business School, as well as others.

Student teams will be given the following challenge – how could you improve entrepreneurial activity and drive economic growth in rural areas and depressed urban communities of Kansas, using the MoCoLab as an asset?  The team would come up with an idea, and then fully develop plans for how to implement it.

Each student team will give a final presentation on November 22, and the winning team will receive an experiential prize (i.e. all expenses paid trip to Washington DC to visit Senator Moran), with a matching amount to fund the development of the idea through the Mobile Collaboratory.

For example, one idea a student team might come up with would be to turn the Airstream into a lab for developing crowd funding campaigns such as Kickstarter, so that aspiring entrepreneurs have a chance to raise funds.  The final presentation would include details on the technology needed (i.e. video editing, web development), human resources needed (business students/faculty to review ideas, graphic design students to develop web pages, film students to shoot the video clips), where the trailer would go, and the business model design.  Importantly, students would actually talk to potential customers, partners, etc. utilizing the Lean LaunchPad approach.

Each team will be comprised of students across campus.  Student teams will be required to register, be given detailed instructions in advance, and paired with a faculty mentor.

GEW 2013 takes place the week of November 18-24.  The proposed date for the final student presentations, panel and lunch is Friday November 22.  A Friday is preferred to encourage maximum student participation and attendance in the audience.  Students will register and be given instructions in advance (i.e. 3-4 weeks prior).

For more information, contact Charlotte Tritch in the KU School of Business.

About nilsgore

professor of architecture at university of kansas
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2 Responses to Global Entrepreneurship week in the KU School of Business will support the development of MoCoLab

  1. Pingback: Inaugural MoCoLab Event | KU Mobile Collaboratory (MoCoLab)

  2. Pingback: Ideas from Global Entrepreneurship Week at KU School of Business | KU Mobile Collaboratory (MoCoLab)

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