Comparative Analysis of Entrepreneurship and Innovation

  • Italy and Silicon Valley
  • OSPFLOR 59 (Stanford in Florence)

For Stanford students interested in this class, please see the Coursework site for more information.

For others interested in learning more about this course and other entrepreneurship-related offerings at Stanford, please visit the Stanford Technology Ventures Program.

Class Overview

Leaders in business, academia and government universally embrace entrepreneurship and innovation as a key enabler for solving the vital challenges of this decade. This course is a seminar of independent research and analysis of the historical, current, and future potential for high-growth entrepreneurship in Italy and its surrounding region. It is designed as independent study of how entrepreneurship in Italy compares to Silicon Valley and other similar innovation clusters today around the globe. Students will gain a deeper understanding of the role of context with respect to entrepreneurship and innovation.

We will exploit two ongoing seminar series from Stanford. The Stanford Center for Professional Development and Stanford Technology Ventures Program broadcasts and archives one of them on Wednesdays throughout the school year focused on Silicon Valley entrepreneurship. It is called the Entrepreneurial Thought Leader (ETL) seminar series. Sometime during the summer of 2011, will show the lineup of the 8 speakers for October and November of 2011 and are highly encouraged during research for this project. Videos and podcasts are quickly archived at after the lectures on Wednesday. The other seminar is focused on European Entrepreneurship and is typically given in the winter and spring quarters of the academic year. However, its slide decks by experts are archived at by its instructor.

Recommended resources for the course can be found here.

Time and Location

The official course time is Wednesdays from 1400-1600 at the Florence campus.

Course Policies

  1. This 2-unit seminar has no prerequisites. Please visit Axess and the Bing Overseas Campus Program website for details on how to register for this course (
  2. Grading is S/NC only:
    • 50% for active participation including attendance, passion and engagement in all activities.
    • 50% for the quality and effort involved with the midterm status report and the final research report and presentation.
  3. Students will work in teams of three members of their choosing.
  4. This is the official group website for the course (