Durham University
Programme and Module Handbook

Postgraduate Programme and Module Handbook 2020-2021 (archived)

Module BUSI4L510: New Venture Creation (Taught)

Department: Management and Marketing

BUSI4L510: New Venture Creation (Taught)

Type Tied Level 4 Credits 10 Availability Available in 2020/21 Module Cap None.
Tied to N1T717


  • None.


  • None.

Excluded Combination of Modules

  • New Venture Creation (Online) BUSI 4L410


  • To develop students' understanding of new venture creation through the lenses of opportunity recognition, innovation and entrepreneurial management.
  • To develop students' understanding of the requirements necessary to create new business ventures in an international setting.
  • To critically analyse the global challenges and approaches to sustainable growth for new ventures.
  • To understand differences between small business owners, managers, and their entrepreneurial teams, through company visits and practical insights acquired from these visits.
  • To look through the lens of corporate entrepreneurship theory and practice to think about innovation across the firm and not just by the small business or new venture owner.


  • Module content is divided into three major parts: the pre-tour preparation including a formative assignment; a tour to a specified international location (previous tours have been to San Francisco) including completion of the group summative assessment; and the post-tour completion of the individual reflective summative assignment.
  • Pre-Tour preparation: There will be two preparatory webinars for the students prior to the tour. Students will be allocated to a group to prepare a formative assignment in preparation for the tour. Each group will be asked to submit a business idea, outlining the challenges that may be faced by a start-up.
  • The Tour and group summative assessment: The tour, spread across five days, will involve visits to innovative companies of varying sizes, and at varying stages of the new venture lifecycle in order to provide practical insights into the creation and development of a new venture in an international context. The tour will be supported by a series of reflective workshops throughout the five days. At the end of the week, each group will give a 10-minute presentation to pitch their business idea.
  • Post-Tour assignment: each student will submit a further individual assignment (2,000 words) detailing their own reflections on the experience, on what they personally learned on the tour, and how they will make use of this experience and knowledge (i.e. ‘reflective practitioner’ activity). There will be an online de-briefing session for all students.
  • Subject Content • Entrepreneurial management of new ventures • Opportunity recognition and networking strategies • Managing growth strategies and resources including incubators and accelerators • Mitigating risks • Managing failure, and exit strategies • Contexts for new venture creation (e.g., the family, the corporation, the high-tech environment, the public sector, the policy environment) • New venture funding mechanisms. • Ethical challenges and social impact in the context of new venture creation.

Learning Outcomes

Subject-specific Knowledge:
  • Upon successful completion of the module, the students will:
  • have a critical understanding of entrepreneurial behaviour within new venture creation
  • have a critical appreciation of how to successfully manage the new venture for viability, sustainability and scalability
  • have a critical understanding of the ways in which entrepreneurial activity in different organisational contexts can be supported
  • have knowledge of how to manage the entrepreneurial task environment, particularly in terms of organising and resourcing entrepreneurship
  • be equipped with knowledge of how to manage networks and relationships for entrepreneurship
  • have gained awareness of international business settings and contextual entrepreneurial skills
Subject-specific Skills:
  • Upon successful completion of the module, the students will:
  • be able to identify and exploit new venture opportunities through a variety of mechanisms including effectuation, design thinking and wicked problem solving
  • be able to identify and assess risks, and manage responses to these
  • have a toolkit for managing entrepreneurial new ventures and entrepreneurial teams
  • be equipped with knowledge of how to manage new venture networks and relationships
  • be able to accommodate different multicultural and international aspects of business
Key Skills:
  • Written communication
  • Planning, organising and time management
  • Problem solving and analysis
  • Team working
  • Interpersonal skills
  • Computer literacy
  • Presenting effectively using oral, written and technological media

Modes of Teaching, Learning and Assessment and how these contribute to the learning outcomes of the module

  • The summative assessments are designed to test the students’ theoretical and practical comprehension of challenges specific to entrepreneurs and the new ventures they create. They also test their capacity for ‘reflective practitioner’ insights. The emphasis throughout will be on integrating theory with practice.
  • The group project will comprise a short multimedia presentation, and the individual assignment will be a 2000-word reflective learning journal based around the company visits.
  • Before the tour there will be preparatory webinars.
  • During the tour there will be lectures which will be configured in order to support students’ learning in practice throughout the course of the week.
  • Following the tour there will be a subsequent webinar that will provide an opportunity to reflect on learning and de-brief on the visit.

Teaching Methods and Learning Hours

Activity Number Frequency Duration Total/Hours
Preparatory sessions 2 2 hours 4
The Tour: Company visits 3 3 hours 9
The Tour: Lectures 5 3 hours 15
Post-Tour sessions and reflection 1 2 hours 2
Reading, project work and preparation (group work and individual) 70
Total 100

Summative Assessment

Component: Group Presentation Component Weighting: 30%
Element Length / duration Element Weighting Resit Opportunity
Multimedia group project (10 mins) 1000 words (equivalent) 100% Individual multimedia presentation (5 mins)
Component: Written Assignment Component Weighting: 70%
Element Length / duration Element Weighting Resit Opportunity
Individual reflective learning journal 2000 words 100% same

Formative Assessment:

500 word group assignment or equivalent

Attendance at all activities marked with this symbol will be monitored. Students who fail to attend these activities, or to complete the summative or formative assessment specified above, will be subject to the procedures defined in the University's General Regulation V, and may be required to leave the University