Master in City & Technology 2020/22 – Term II
Seminar Name: Business Innovation
Total Hours: 20 hours
Faculty: Davide Rovera

Image by DANIEL DIAZ from Pixabay


In an ever-changing world, where the speed of innovation and the amount of external forces and drives is constantly growing, the capability to quickly evaluate opportunities and innovate is paramount for the creation of successful businesses. The Business Innovation Seminar is designed to provide students from architecture and design backgrounds the key understanding of what makes a project a viable business idea, how to analyze markets and industries, how to validate ideas early on and how to iterate and innovate on business models. Based on the Lean Methodology and mixing together theory, real-life examples, practical exercises and 1-1 feedback, it gives students a toolbox and a mental mindset to approach opportunities during their professional careers. All the content will be directly applied by students on their own final thesis and presented in a final pitch to a Jury of experts.

Learning Objectives

The aim of the seminar is to provide students with the tools to understand and evaluate business opportunities based on their own research projects. It provides a framework to analyze ideas, tools and references to understand the market and guidelines on how to understand whether a venture can be successfully created. The core competencies are complemented with an introduction to business model innovation and practical exercises.

Specific Objectives

  • Learn how to evaluate business opportunities
  • Understand and apply the concept of Product-Market Fit
  • Understand and apply the concept of Unit Economics
  • Recognize the core elements of a successful venture
  • Develop and Iterate on a Business Model for a specific idea


Davide Rovera is a Lecturer at the Department of Strategy and General Management at Esade Business School, where he teaches Entrepreneurship and Product Management courses both at the undergrad and graduate level. He is the co-founder and Manager of eWorks, Esade’s venture creation program, which provides support to students and recent graduates working on the creation of high growth companies. From 2017 to 2019 he collaborated with Fusion Point, a project created in partnership between Esade, UPC (Polytechnic University of Catalunya) and IED (Istituto Europeo di Design) and part of the Design Factory Global Network. He has been part of the founding team of Fusion Point, then covered the role of Industry Collaboration Manager. Davide is particularly interested in supporting early stage ventures, especially at the intersection between technology, design and business. He is an investor and advisor to multiple early stage startups in different industries. Before joining Esade, he worked as a Consultant in the Business Development and Special Projects area of CNH Industrial, one of the world’s largest capital goods companies. He acquired international startup experience by leading the US Business Development efforts in San Francisco for an Italian startup, Vivocha and co-created an incubator for web 2.0 projects, Treatabit.

He holds a M.Sc. in Industrial Engineering and Management from Politecnico di Torino (Italy) and completed his studies at RWTH Aachen (Germany) and Kent University (UK).