Italy Associate Professor in Entrepreneurship and Innovation University of Bologna Core Faculty
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Laura Toschi is Associate Professor in Entrepreneurship and Innovation at the University of Bologna and serves as Deputy Director of the Executive Master in Technology & Innovation Management at Bologna Business School. At the University of Bologna, Laura graduated in Management Engineering in 2004 and received her PhD in Management in 2009. Laura has been a Visiting Scholar at Boston University (2008), Research Fellow at Science Policy Research Unit (SPRU) (2011-2013), and Visiting Professor at University of Queensland (2017) and Queensland University of Technology (2020 and 2023). Laura teaches courses in business planning, entrepreneurial finance, entrepreneurial ecosystems, and innovation management at the undergraduate, MBA, PhD, and executive levels. In her research, Laura focuses on several areas of entrepreneurship and innovation. First, she studies the entrepreneurial finance landscape (venture capital, seed university funds, proof of concept funds and impact investing). Second, she is interested in social and sustainability issues, investigating the role of social hybrid organizations and studying the dynamics of sustainability transitions with a focus on the green economy. Third, she is interested in university-industry technology transfer to help the process of bringing research developments to market. Her research has appeared in leading academic journals such as Organization Science, Research Policy, Journal of Business Venturing, Ecological Economics, Industrial and Corporate Change, Technological Forecasting and Social Change, International Small Business Journal, and Journal of Technology Transfer. Laura has been practicing ballet since the age of 6, earning a dancer’s diploma issued by La Scala Academy in Milan and a teacher’s diploma (Vaganova method) issued by IDA (International Dance Association).


The course, whose nature is predominantly applicative, aims to develop a practical orientation towards entrepreneurship, providing the strategic and operational tools for the creation of new ventures and their subsequent development.

Lectures and readings provide an introduction to the topics to be covered in a business plan:

  • business idea evaluation
  • market and industry analysis
  • product/service and intellectual property protection
  • business model and operations
  • financials in the new venture creation process
  • engaging investors
  • art of pitching
Design, Fashion and Luxury Goods
Food and Wine
Supercars, Superbikes and Motorsports
AI and Manufacturing
Green Energy and Sustainable Businesses

The development of an innovative project requires resources that aren’t often available in the company or entrepreneurial group. Therefore, it’s necessary to get to know one’s own reference innovative ecosystem, to understand which players (investors, incubators, accelerators, businesses) and which initiatives are available to promote innovation in its different development stages. The goal of the course is to provide participants with the basic skills to assess, from a financial point of view, their innovative project and figure out which form of support to turn to in order to accelerate its growth process. There will be a special focus on the advantages and disadvantages that characterize the different forms of funding and on the strategic decisions that every innovation manager needs to take, within an ecosystem-based rationale.

Technology and Innovation

The evolution of innovation and entrepreneurship techniques

MBA Evening
  • Evaluation and investments (what to write and how on the Business Plan)
  • Business Angel testimonial on how to evaluate Business Plans
  • Communication and Pitch Workshops
  • Final debrief
Business Planning
  • Understanding financials Part I
  • Understanding financials Part II
  • Mapping of financing arrangements
  • Investor side testimonials
Business Planning

This course provides a full overview of the strategic and operational planning tools of the business, through a guided illustration of the business plan, its contents, and the multiple purposes for which it may be usefully employed in both creating and developing a business.

The objective of the course is to provide participants with the knowledge and skills that can be useful at the beginning of the entrepreneurship process, during the phase of conceptualizing new business ideas. Focus will be placed on the subjects of recognition of entrepreneurial opportunities, feasibility analysis of a new business idea from the organizational, strategic and economic-financial points of view, concluding with a business plan.

Technology and Innovation

The course presents strategies, methods and tools used by leading companies in order to develop successful food innovations. It covers concepts, skills and tools that are used by managers to propose, plan and lead project teams to succesful completion of their innovation projects, by focusing on both traditional (stage-gate) and advanced (agile) methodologies. The course is centred on the discussion of practical experiences of key R&D and innovation managers.

Food Innovation and Regeneration