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New Product Design & Business Development

The New Product Design and Business Development program connects leading companies with exceptional University of Minnesota graduate students to develop valuable new products.

Throughout a 9-month project cycle, each client company sponsors a team of engineering and business students in connection with a specific product. Drawing on guidance from their client, faculty coaches, and industry advisors, student teams work independently to conduct background research, and to develop a working prototype and an accompanying business plan, which the client then carries forward to launch. 

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Students Help Clients Bring Products to Market

Sponsors and faculty explain how the New Product Design and Business Development class at the Carlson School of Management helps clients bring products to market and unleashes the resources and talents of the University of Minnesota.

Benefits for Students

Student participants acquire hands-on experience in new product development, technology management and business creation.

  • Discover how engineering and business intersect to inform successful new products
  • Get valuable work experience to share with future employers
  • Practice tools from the classroom in a real-world environment
  • Lead development of an action plan for the client organization with potential for implementation 

Syllabus

New Product Design and Business Development is a graduate-level course jointly offered by the Carlson School of Management, the Department of Mechanical Engineering, and the Department of Biomedical Engineering. A team of approximately six students (divided evenly between engineering and business students), along with a faculty coach and a company representative, work together throughout nine months to develop a working prototype product and business. MBA students may take the course for either the Fall (as ENTR 6041 for 4 credits) or the Spring (as ENTR 6042 for 4 credits) or for both terms (8 credits).

Schedule

View the class schedule

Assignments

View team assignments and presentations.

Resources

View project resources and useful links.

Forms

View project forms.

Projects Expenses

There may be significant project expenses associated with developing student teams' projects, including prototyping and market research expenses. The client organization is aware of this. All decisions about what costs to incur must be made in consultation with, and ultimately approved by the client organization. 

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Brochure

View information about student opportunities in New Product Design and Business Development

Shocker Lecture

The Shocker Lecture ran from 2000 to 2011 with the mission of highlighting key innovations in product development. Each year featured a nationally known figure who discussed latest concepts in product development process. The lecture series was named after Professor Allen Shocker, a former professor in the Carlson School of Business and one of the founders of the New Product Design and Business Development program.

View past lectures

Benefits for Clients

The University of Minnesota partners with organizations of all kinds to provide hands-on learning opportunities for students that result in innovative new products.

  • Get a working prototype and accompanying business plan for a new product
  • Tap expertise from graduate-level students who offer cross-functional knowledge in a variety of disciplines
  • Generate new insights about the marketplace
  • Collaborate with the project team to refine the solution

Sponsor Information

Get project timelines, administrative information, and logistics resources.

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Project Expenses

There may be significant project expenses associated with developing a project, including prototyping and market research expenses. All decisions about what costs to incur will be made in consultation with, and ultimately approved by the client organization.

Learn more

Projects/Results

View examples of past projects.

Resources

View a variety of available resources.

Assignments

Contact Information

Professor Will Durfee
College of Science and Engineering

Professor Daniel Forbes
Carlson School of Management