pixel Sciencepreneur | Universidade NOVA de Lisboa


The Sciencepreneur program was designed for NOVA scientists who are seeking to create value from their research activities. We have developed a program that focuses on the acquisition of the basic concepts and understanding on how to generate value from their research activities into a wider context, namely their benefits to the society. We have developed together with the NOVA Doctoral School, the Sciencepreneur | The Basics, which is a course to provide PhD students, Researchers, Professors and Scientists with the theoretical content required to work on the right mindset, and the Sciencepreneur | Hands-on, for those who have understood the potential of their research activities and want to develop together with a network of experts and mentors, the potential commercialization strategies of the technology or scientific breakthroughs, work on a business case and present it to Venture Capitalists in the end of the program.


Sciencepreneur | The Basics

Developed together with the NOVA Doctoral School, this course provides the theoretical content required to analyze research from a broader perspective and work on the right mindset. Learn more about Sciencepreneur | The Basics course.


Sciencepreneur | Hands-on

Creating value from research


Sciencepreneur Hands-on aims to accelerate knowledge transfer at NOVA, supporting scientists with a technological or scientific breakthrough to identify the best path for its commercialization, through a one-on-one guidance on how to build a go-to-market strategy, from research results to impact.

What is Sciencepreneur Hands-on ?

Program Description

Sciencepreneur Hands-on aims to accelerate knowledge transfer at NOVA, supporting scientists with a technological or scientific breakthrough to identify the best path for its commercialization, through a one-on-one guidance on how to build a go-to-market strategy, from research results to impact.

Participants will have access to:

  • Support and follow-up by experts from NOVA and program partners, with experience in knowledge and technology transfer and business development;
  • Regular meetings with selected coaches/mentors, who will closely follow the evolution of the participants/teams and facilitate networking opportunities;
  • Feedback/guidance from venture capitalists and science-based entrepreneurs;
  • NOVA Mentor Network and other resources;
  • Connection with different schools and other research labs, depending on specific needs.

This initiative is promoted by Rectory’s NOVA IMPACT.

Key goals:

  • Explore, identify and analyze the best path for commercializing a lab’s emerging technology or scientific breakthrough (licensing vs spin-off), including IP protection;
  • Generate new science-based business opportunities;
  • Identify the best market opportunities for the proposed technology or scientific breakthrough and its scalability;
  • Promote the conversion of NOVA technologies or scientific breakthroughs into economic and social value
  • Provide the participants with the mindset to create socioeconomic value out of their research.

Workload and Activities:

The Program will take place online, through a period of 14 weeks. The estimated availability is of 6 hours per week (taking into account work and mentoring sessions).

The program will begin on the 7th December until the 12th of March.

Selected applicants will meet their assigned mentors in the beginning of the program (7th December) to present the current status of their project and brainstorm. There will be a clearly defined list of milestones to achieve throughout the program, towards the desired goal. Teams must comply with these milestones. Meetings will occur normally every week, but can vary depending on specific milestones and mentors’ availability.

Midway, each team will have to give a midterm pitch (5th of February), presenting the developments made thus far to a panel of experienced invited guests, who will provide feedback and tips for the steps ahead.

Towards the end, teams should work on the final business case report, and a pitch trial session will take place before the final pitch session on the 12th of March.

In the end of the program (12th of March), applicants will pitch their work to a panel of investors and experienced entrepreneurs.


During this program the participants will:

  • Write a Business Case with an analysis of the technology or scientific breakthrough status, the intellectual property landscape, if applicable, a consideration of the competition, an overview of an appropriate business model, and recommendations for next steps – Please note that the final conclusion might be three way: 1) Create a spin-off; 2) Find a licensee/partnership; or 3) Go back to the lab and improve the technology;
  • Find business-oriented members to join the team (in case of individual applications or teams lacking this background) – if applicable;
  • Pitch the outcomes to a group of experts from business and venture capital contexts.

Who can apply?

  • Teams or individuals that are working in a technological or scientific project. Teams will be valued over individual applications but both are encouraged to apply.
  • Teams must have at least one member from NOVA University Lisbon and the technology/scientific breakthrough must have been developed in part or in total at NOVA.
  • Individuals must have a relation to NOVA University Lisbon (PhD students, Professors, Researchers, Post-Doc, etc).


Participation Requirements

To participate in Sciencepreneur Hands-on, it is mandatory to have previously participated in the Sciencepreneur - the Basics, or have participated in other entrepreneurship programs, where participants already got contact with the main entrepreneurship-based concepts. This is an action-based program where you will mainly learn by doing, focusing on practice rather than theory.

Projects are welcome in any field of knowledge, as long as they have a strong scientific component, are innovative or disruptive, have some discernible economic value, and have not yet been funded by market-oriented investors.

When and how?

Date: From 7th December 2020 to 12th of March 2021

Personalized mentorship:

Once every week with assigned mentor;

Facilitated access to all experts from NOVA Mentor Network and other NOVA IMPACT partners.

Venue: Online

Applications and selection

  • Deadline for applications: 27th November 2020 through the ONLINE FORM
  • Selection of applicants (interviews if required): 22nd November till 4th December
  • Kick-off: 7th December


Regulation Sciencepreneur Hands-on