CatchBio – NWO
CatchBio is a consortium of 21 partners from industry and academia, partly financed by the Dutch Ministries of Economic Affairs and of Education, Culture and Science, and with the support office based at the Dutch Research Council (NWO – De Nederlandse Organisatie voor Wetenschappelijk Onderzoek). NWO invests almost 1 billion euros in curiosity-driven research, research related to societal challenges, and research infrastructure.
When the consortium welcomed 30+ new postdocs, they had to ensure their projects did not become pure academic projects but lead to new business opportunities for the partner companies. CatchBio, in cooperation with NWO, wanted to organize a workshop to introduce the postdocs to a business mindset to ensure the later successful handover of projects to companies.
We developed a customized, 2-day workshop building on the THINK-ACT approach. In the morning sessions, our focus was on “THINK” (knowledge transfer, tool application, case discussion). In the afternoon, we worked with the postdocs on “ACT” (develop a business vision for own research program and present).
Day 1 was focused on building a research roadmap. Participants were asked to clarify the ‘what’ and especially the ‘why’ of their research, envision the academic & industry relevance of their work, and start mapping out a research plan for the upcoming month. This ensured we gathered tangible research ideas and had a plan forward with clear actions.
Day 2 was focused on clarifying the business impact of the project. We did so by sharing inspirational cases and providing participants with tools and templates to build a short pitch.
We achieved two key results from our workshop. First, at the end of the workshop, participants presented tangible projects to further pursue. Second, they learned a methodology and received a set of tools & templates to support future projects.