Economy and Management in BiotechnologyOrganization logo: Wageningen University & Research

About this course

The biotechnology companies needs people who take decisions on when and how to make a business of a scientific novelty developed in the lab. This course teaches you how to make such decisions for bulk products and high-value products.
The course consists of a financial, an entrepreneurial and an economic and managerial parts whose focus are:

  • Economic potential of a new biotechnology product/process in the current biotech market
  • Entrepreneurial approach to the creation, development and validation of business propositions in the Biotech sector
  • The business/organizational structure to design and develop a novel biotechnology process/product at industrial scale

In the first part, you learn how to model the business behind a biotechnological product. The theory comprises three aspects:

  • Analyse the effect of the production scale and of the production factors on cost analysis of the bioprocess in your company
  • Analyse the financial aspect of your company: cash-flow analysis, funding, debt, stocks, product portfolio
    In the second part, you learn how to get in the market phase. This boils down to
  • Insight on Entrepreneurial skills, tools and strategies to build a profitable and sustainable business in the biotech sector
  • Knowledge on key milestones and decision points for developing a feasible business proposition
    In the third part, you learn how to consolidate the role of your company/business in the biotech market. This brings you into:
  • Analyse the behavior of market stakeholders other than your company, such as potential competitors and customers, as well the government and society
  • Designing the management structure of the business behind a biotechnological innovation both at small and at large industrial/market scale

This course is meant as a necessary step a series of bioprocess engineering courses at MSc level towards scaling a relevant industrial scale. The required knowledge is:

  • Knowledge and skills from bioprocess engineering design courses such as BPE20306 Bioreactor Design, BPE-20806 Separation Process Design, or similar courses
  • Knowledge skills from math courses such as MAT14903 Mathematics 1 and MAT15003 Mathematics 2 or similar courses. In particular it is required proficiency in analysing and solving math problems involving sets of algebraic and ordinary differential equations.
  • Proficiency in team-working and report/plan writing
    This course provides the needed support for the design cases in BCT-32306 Advanced Biorefinery, and for BPE-60312 Bioprocess Design.

Learning outcomes

After successful completion of this course, students are able to apply to a biotech business the principles of cost and profit analysis, microeconomic analysis of markets, entrepreneurial tools and management analysis in order to:

  • analyse the financial structure of biotechnology companies;
  • analyse the role of the market stakeholders (companies, clients, government) in the biotechnology sector;
  • design a simple marketing and pricing strategy for both novel and well-established biotechnological products;
  • apply state-of-art business and revenue models for different product / service combinations and the necessary skills and tools to do so;
  • develop a feasible business proposition to initiate, manage and commercialise biotechnological products/services at to the most suitable industrial scale.

Prior knowledge

Assumed Knowledge:
Bachelor in Biotechnology, Biobased Science or Economic field including quantitative courses regarding general principle of bioprocess design

If anything remains unclear, please check the FAQ of Wageningen University.


  • Start date

    30 oktober 2023

    • Ends
      22 december 2023
    • Term *
      Period 2
    • Location
    • Instruction language
    • Register between
      1 Jun, 00:00 - 1 Oct 2023
    Enrolment period closed
For guests registration, this course is handled by Wageningen University