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DRPS : Course Catalogue : School of Geosciences : Postgraduate Courses (School of GeoSciences)

Postgraduate Course: Sustainable Entrepreneurship (PGGE11289)

Course Outline
SchoolSchool of Geosciences CollegeCollege of Science and Engineering
Credit level (Normal year taken)SCQF Level 11 (Postgraduate) AvailabilityNot available to visiting students
SCQF Credits20 ECTS Credits10
SummaryIncreasingly entrepreneurship is viewed as an important enabler of sustainable development. Entrepreneurial practices and approaches support many of our social, economic, and environmental challenges. This course seeks to apply an entrepreneurial perspective to the UN sustainable development goals and examine how entrepreneurship takes place, with what impacts, and what factors influence the business approaches being used. The course places the student within this context encouraging them to develop their own entrepreneurial knowledge, skills and self-efficacy to contribute entrepreneurial solutions.
Course description Sustainable development is an increasing and ongoing process. The scale of our global UN Sustainable Development Goals requires a regular flow of new and innovative ideas and solutions designed to create positive impact for current and future generations. This course will provide an understanding of the contribution of academic theories and concepts and also a consideration of the developing practices of sustainable entrepreneurship. It considers the nature of sustainable entrepreneurship from a wide range of perspectives, examining how it can create value for consumers, society, the environment, and the economy. The course is practically orientated and encourages students to consider problems creatively and to identify, define, assess and communicate sustainable business opportunities, which are key entrepreneurship skills. This course does not aim to teach students how to start a business, but rather how to critically think about what sustainable approaches and business models are being developed, with what impacts. The course places the student within this context and challenges them to consider how they can personally identify and offer new and creative insights into solving sustainable development challenges through entrepreneurial practices.

The lectures and activities will be based around the following key topics:
1. Introduction: To the course, assessments and the concepts and importance of entrepreneurship and sustainability.
2. Sustainable development through business: Sustainability on the agenda. Entrepreneurship through the lens of the UNSDGs. Review of changes and challenges. Opportunities for entrepreneurship and innovation.
3. Business approaches for sustainability: Business approaches and models for sustainability.
4. The influence of stakeholders: Identification of key stakeholder groups. Push/pull drivers. Consideration of influences.
5. The entrepreneurial process (1): Exploring problems and opportunities. Entrepreneurial process, idea to venture creation. Problem sourcing/identification and reframing. Fact finding.
6. The entrepreneurial process (2): Generating ideas and innovative solutions. Creativity and innovation, barriers, and enablers. Generating and evaluating ideas.
7. Turning an idea into a business proposal: Designing a viable business / knowing your customer. Use of business tools including Business Model Canvas/Sustainable Business Model Canvas.
8. Marketing, promotion and branding: Branding and marketing for business start-ups and SMEs.
9. Establishing a sustainable business: Founder, roles, team, network. values, mission, business types, protecting your identity and IP.
10. Idea to Market: Getting a business ready. Business models and routes to market.

A number of guest entrepreneurs/entrepreneurial organisations and case studies will be included within the course (subject to availability).

Entry Requirements (not applicable to Visiting Students)
Pre-requisites Co-requisites
Prohibited Combinations Other requirements None
Course Delivery Information
Academic year 2024/25, Not available to visiting students (SS1) Quota:  0
Course Start Semester 1
Timetable Timetable
Learning and Teaching activities (Further Info) Total Hours: 200 ( Lecture Hours 33, Programme Level Learning and Teaching Hours 4, Directed Learning and Independent Learning Hours 163 )
Assessment (Further Info) Written Exam 0 %, Coursework 100 %, Practical Exam 0 %
Additional Information (Assessment) Students can choose a topic (industry/or sustainability issue) in line with their interests, under staff guidance and subject to approval where required.

(No Examination) Coursework 100%:

1. Evaluation report (LO2) 1,500 words (30% marks). This report will address an aspect of business action/response within the domain of sustainability.

2. Business report (All LOs) 3,000 words (70% of course mark). Business proposal for an entrepreneurial solution to a clearly identified problem which contributes to at least one UN SDG.
Feedback The assessments will offer choice to allow students to focus on sectors and/or sustainability themes that are of more interest to them. Feedback on the first assessment report will be provided in time to inform the second assessment final report.
No Exam Information
Learning Outcomes
On completion of this course, the student will be able to:
  1. Demonstrate a critical understanding of relevant theories, frameworks and concepts of entrepreneurship within the economic, social, and environmental domains of sustainability.
  2. Identify and build awareness of a range of business approaches being used which aim to meet social, environment and economic objectives.
  3. Identify, conceptualise, and evaluate a sustainable entrepreneurial solution to a clearly identified problem.
  4. Apply business techniques and tools to communicate a sustainable entrepreneurship proposal.
Reading List
Each week a series of journal articles, reports and book chapters will be recommended. In addition, there will be core reading materials:

- Aagaard A editor., ed. (2019) Sustainable Business Models Innovation, Implementation and Success / Edited by Annabeth Aagaard. 1st ed. Springer International Publishing.
- Aulet B. (2013) Disciplined Entrepreneurship: 24 Steps to a Successful Startup.
- Baines P. (2022) Marketing. Sixth edition / Paul Baines, Paolo Antonetti, Sara Rosengren. (Antonetti P, Rosengren S, Baines P, eds.). Oxford University Press
- Burns, P. (2017) Entrepreneurship and Small Business, Start-up Growth and Maturity, Palgrave McMillan.
- Fahy J and Jobber, D. (2022) Foundations of Marketing / Seventh edition. (Jobber D, ed.). McGraw Hill
- Freudenreich, B., L├╝deke-Freund, F. and Schaltegger, S. (2019). A stakeholder theory perspective on business models: value creation for sustainability. Journal of Business Ethics.
- Greene, F. (2020) Entrepreneurship, Theory and Practice (2020), Macmillan International Higher Education.
- Gutterman, S G. (2018) Sustainable Entrepreneurship, Business Expert Press.
- Harris T (2019) Start-up A Practical Guide to Starting and Running a New Business. 2nd ed. 2019. Springer International Publishing.
- Jobber D. (2020) Principles and Practice of Marketing. Ninth edition / David Jobber and Fiona Ellis-Chadwick. (Ellis-Chadwick F, ed.). McGraw-Hill Education
- Kyro, P., Editor. (2015) Handbook of Entrepreneurship and Sustainable Development Research, Edward Elgar
- Lindgreen, A, Moan, F, Vallaster, C, Yousafzai, S and Florencio, BP. (2019) Sustainable Entrepreneurship: Discovering, Creating and Seizing Opportunities for Blended Value Generation, Routledge.
- Masciarelli, F and Leonelli, S. (2020) Sustainable Entrepreneurship: How entrepreneurs create value from sustainable opportunities, Emerald Publishing.
- Mullins J. (2017) The New Business Road Test: What Entrepreneurs and Investors Should Do before Launching a Lean Start-Up. 5th edition. Pearson Education Limited.
- Osterwalder, A and Pigneur, Y. (2010) Business Model Generation: A Handbook for Visionaries, Game Changers, and Challengers (The Strategyzer Series), Wiley.
- Raworth K. (2018) Doughnut Economics: Seven Ways to Think Like a 21st-Century Economist / Kate Raworth. Paperback edition. RH Business Books.
- Ries, E. (2011) The lean start up: how constant innovation creates radically successful businesses, Portfolio Penguin.
- Shepherd, D and Patzelt, H. (2017) Trailblazing in Entrepreneurship: Creating New Paths for Understanding the Field, Palgrave MacMillan.
- TWI2050. (2018) TWI2050 - The World in 2050: Transformations to Achieve the Sustainable Development Goals.; 2018.
- United Nations. (2015) Transforming our world: the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. Published 2015.
- Weidinger, C, Fischler, F, Schmidpeter, R. (2014) Eds, Sustainable Entrepreneurship: Business Success through Sustainability, CSR, Sustainability, Ethics & Governance, Springer.
Additional Information
Graduate Attributes and Skills The course will support the development of graduate attributes and the personal and professional techniques, tools and business skills required in a wide range of organisations working at the interface of the economy, environment and society and development challenges. It will also help prepare students who wish to develop their own entrepreneurial career with a sustainability or natural economy focus. The course will support the development of competencies for entrepreneurship and sustainability including, business acumen, future thinking, systems thinking, understanding and empathy, creative problem solving, research, evaluating, synthesis and presentation of complex ideas
Keywordsentrepreneurship,sustainable business,small business,rural entrepreneurship,natural economy
Course organiserDr Carol Langston
Course secretaryMiss Lydia Hall
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