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Biodesign and Technology Entrepreneurship for Societal Health

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Addressing the social and environmental drivers of health is a new frontier of innovation.

Advances in this area will allow us to improve global and public health at scale and tackle major health burdens such as chronic disease, mental health challenges, food insecurity and malnutrition, misinformation, and growing inequalities. In Biodesign and Technology Entrepreneurship for Societal Health, you will learn about the practical, scientific, technological, and economic opportunities unique to innovating in these problem areas.

Applications for the Winter 2024 quarter will open during the Fall 2022-2023 quarter! 

During this interactive, project-based course, over 40 expert guest speakers and mentors, including inspiring entrepreneurs, impact investors, researchers, and global health leaders, will share their journeys and how their work addresses societal health challenges. 

You will be taught the Biodesign process and Impact Entrepreneurship framework and using them will help you to deeply understand important unmet needs, interview a range of stakeholders and potential customers, generate insights on the problems you are tackling, conduct brainstorming and ideation sessions, develop concept prototypes, and validate your ideas to develop a product or service that people want, and that society needs.

In addition to lectures and discussions about important topics like global health, the social determinants of health, and the impact of climate change on health, students will learn through experience. The experiential component of this class is about rolling up your sleeves, forming teams, researching and reframing societal health problems, and developing technology solutions to address them. By engaging with our speakers, developing your project, and working on class activities you will learn about innovation areas, partnerships, business models, and funding sources to improve health equity and societal health at scale. 

You also will learn how to lay the foundation for building a impact-driven start-up and organization exploring topics such as DEI, mission-aligned capital and governance, and aligning business models with impact. Students will be a part of teams tackling societal health issues and will be provided with expert mentors to help them through the class and in innovating to create a concept to fill an unmet need. Deliverables are focused on classroom activities and team presentations.

Enrollment will be capped at 30 students and applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis, so we encourage you to apply early! This course is offered as part of the Biodesign-Emergence Partnership 


   Example Student Projects

Student Testimonials


Teaching Team