Lodtz E-Lab

Your existing “E-Lab”, its infrastructure and present activities (e.g. courses, modules, events etc.)

MUL has recently set up the Knowledge and Innovation Hub (KIH) dedicated to supporting academic excellence and innovation through a variety of complementary means:

  • the Office for Research, Strategies and Innovation that gathers experienced project managers providing administrative and financial assistance at all stages of project development;
  • the Centre for Innovation and Technology Transfer advising and coaching innovative researchers and acting as intermediary between the researchers and businesses, with networking events; IPR guidance, business plan consultations and incubator facilities for start-up companies with the Library and Information Centre providing access to a variety of databases and electronic resources.

All three university units serve researchers and students in their academic and business endeavours, which is why we decided to put their combined talents, know-how and expertise to the best advantage in the best way possible – by designing an open space for people to freely discuss their
ideas in a convivial, innovation-friendly atmosphere, allowing for a variety of purposes: from larger networking events to more intimate, one-on-one discussions – a perfect place for networking and inspiration. The ideation space is followed by 6 silent study rooms and 5 meeting rooms ready to be
used at different stages of the E-Lab programme by the students: meeting rooms will be assigned to each of the individual teams for undisturbed internal discussions and businessplan development.

There are also larger conference rooms, sitting 10-20 people, equipped with all the necessary facilities for conducting workshops and lectures.

Moreover, we have a large lecture hall suitable for larger events, such as networking and matchmaking during innovation week. The successful e-lab programme graduates will become startup entrepreneurs, thus we will offer them a co-working space with furnished offices (four individual
rooms) to settle their businesses in close vicinity of their advisors and mentors.
Our contribution includes:

  1. Participation in the EIT Health Design Thinking Challenges
  2. Collaboration with KI and Open lab in developing joint Teach-the-teacher courses on Design
    Thinking
  3. Collaboration with MaDoPa and their Digital E-Lab (17364) project
  4. Development of joint international events, such as Innovation Week – aligning events in Poland and throughout EIT Health in order to leverage impact, stimulate competitiveness and provide new
    opportunities for students
  5. An interdisciplinary ten-month entrepreneurship programme run in collaboration with other ELabs (lined up events, collaboration in developing joint EIT Health workshops and summer schools)
    and with industrial partners: Draum Design (workshop for students on service design and sitting on board of competitions) and Celonpharma as well as GE (providing challenges and sitting on board of competition).

connected to the local and international events:
design thinking week, entrepreneurship week, quarterly Lodzkie Region promotes start-ups, etc.
The programme is run in four stages:

  1. Introduction to entrepreneurship & Team Building
  2. Ideation
  3. Demonstrator development
  4. Achieving product maturity

MUL, in collaboration with Draum Design, Celonpharma, GE, and with the Stockholm E-Lab, introduced a 10-month entrepreneurship course for students and PhD students, complemented by challenge-driven competitions.
The project will be carried out in 4 consecutive stages:

Opening – (M1): administrative set up, curriculum development, and advertising campaign.

  1. Introduction to entrepreneurship & team building (M2-4) with the completed recruitment of 40 students, who will take the classes in economics, IPR, marketing, law, and team building. The team
  2. building exercise will lead to creation of interdisciplinary teams (with medical, technical, design and business background), who will participate in the first open challenge competition for students connected with the introductory Teach-the Teacher workshop conducted by the KI and Open Lab Trainers
    In M4 Draum Design will conduct workshop on service design, and the best solution to the challenge, will win a 2-week placement in Norway with all expenses covered.
  3. Ideation (M5-7) The teams will learn product development, design thinking, negotiations, technology transfer and IPR. They will participate in an open-to-all challenge, prepared by Celonpharma in collaboration with GE. The successful team will win the 2-week placement in the company and thus possibly will even receive mentorship. Other teams will hone their negotiation skills in speed dating with the future mentors, who will coach them until the end of the programme. Later, teams will present their ideas at pre-pitch presentations –with the support of their mentor, and on their own.
  4. Demonstrator development (M8-10) –at this stage student teams will build demonstrators, and test their networking and presentation skills during the Lodzkie promotes Start-ups event.
  5. The final stage (M11-12) will be devoted to achieving product maturity. The students will present their innovative ideas during the Entrepreneurship week co-organized by the EIT Health E-Labs (successful pitch authors will win the trip to another EIT Health event connecting innovators and investors, thus allowing the start-up to gain the momentum. All the teams who successfully complete the project will enter into negotiations with the TTO, and will sign the contracts for further incubation of their businesses.

Our E-lab added-value, locally and for EIT Health?

The SMART-UP Lab concept is based on interdisciplinary collaboration of students from the medical university, technical, comprehensive and design departments of other Lodz schools. In this respect, we already have three-year experience in teaching and implementing design-thinking methodology.

In 2018 we will focus on the interdisciplinarity of the experts/mentors, with background in medicine and engineering, in collaboration with the Interdisciplinary School of Innovation (the ISI programme is operated by the Technical University of Lodz, and MUL contributes to this local programme).

The unique combination of our results, new incubator space and collaboration with other E-labs to hone our skills and programmes, provides an interesting opportunity for our students to grow their entrepreneurial acumen. In particular, this will be achieved by continued Train-the-trainer workshops with KI and Open Lab, joint activities with the Digital Lab, and collaboration with the Smart Ageing Lab in Dublin. With an increasing number of local and regional events, such as the Lodzkie Region promotes start-ups, Start-up weekend, Lodzkie Innovation Days, Start-up Talks, Kickstarter, and Design-Thinking week, we introduce the students to the local start-up ecosystem.

Examples of concrete activities for 2018

  1. Extending the Teach-The-Teacher format with other topics , such as TRIZ and service design (ideally, the workshop could be open to all E-Lab trainers, done in collaboration with KI and Open Lab, and also with Draum Design – the format can be developed into a cycle of workshops, each year would introduce different topics, and new locations).
  2. Incorporating expertise taken from other EIT Health activities :
    • The “Out of the Building” challenge, an exercise characteristic of the BootCamp projects, where students visit the university hospital for 1-2 days and compile the list of unmet needs of the users (both health care professionals and patients). The integrated care challenge will be presented by the hospital management.
    • InnoDiaCare Summer School, stemming from the CLOSE IbD project. The co-design approach, where students will team up with the actual end-users, will be exercised for the first time). Both the co-design methodology and the general topic of the summer school (innovation in diabetes care) will be introduced as a new challenge.
    • A joint challenge for the SMART-UP Lab and StarShip Participants, provided by Celonpharma or GE.
  3. An additional “Meet the Start-Ups” event open to all at the end of the course, where the invited start-ups will share their experiences. All start-ups who have participated in other EIT Health programmes/competitions will be present. Individual mentoring session after the presentations will be available for the SMART-UP Lab teams only.
  4. Centre of Business Innovation of the Lodzkie region operates via a network of business advisors and will provide the challenge pertaining to the local specificity. This challenge will be solved in competition with the ISI students in order to increase integration and exchange of best practices on the regional level.