PhD scholarship in Start-up Boards

tirsdag 05 jan 21

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Frist 2. februar 2021
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DTU, The Technical University of Denmark, Centre for Technology Entrepreneurship invites applicants for a 3-year PhD position on “Start-up Boards”, starting ideally on 1 March 2021 or as soon as possible thereafter in 2021. This PhD project will be supervised by Associate Professors Thomas J. Howard and Carina Lomberg.

The Centre for Technology Entrepreneurship (DTU Entrepreneurship) puts evidence-based research in focus on a wide range of management, pedagogic, and policy issues related to entrepreneurship and innovation. Our research promotes technology-based entrepreneurship by generating, disseminating, and applying knowledge and competencies to education and business development within and beyond DTU.

We collaborate closely with a range of industry partners, as well as private and public organizations. We strive to develop the entrepreneurial capabilities of students, civil society, executives, researchers, and policymakers to create positive social and economic change. At the Centre, the interplay between research, education and start-ups creates a thriving entrepreneurial ecosystem.

The project focuses on understanding the life cycle phases and impact of a start-up board on start-up success. Potential questions to be addressed could centre around the readiness level of the start-up and potential board members with regards to performance and value. This includes in-depth qualitative measures about the start-up (e.g. business gestation activities, survival, sales and employment growth) and their boards (e.g. incentivising and impact) and the development of suitable scales for measurers. This project integrates insights from entrepreneurship, management, and psychology.

Responsibilities and qualifications
Your research tasks include theoretical and empirical work on start-up boards that can inform the practice of creating and “managing” boards as well as informing on how to excel as a board member. We expect you to disseminate your results in academically and practically relevant outlets, as well as translating your knowledge into teaching materials and exercises. In order to do so, we provide you access to network associations, early stage start-ups from the X-tech programme and MSc in Technology Entrepreneurship, and an Executive Board Education programme, in which you will be actively included. We expect the competence and openness to sit on boards yourself either as an observer or active member.

The project work requires good understanding of qualitative methods, good communication skills, and an analytically mind-set with reasonable digital skills. Experience in start-ups and boards would be of great advantage.

We are looking for a candidate with a background in entrepreneurship or management, or an understanding of psychology-related theories with respect to entrepreneurship and management.

You will be required to:

  • conduct a literature review about 
  • engage with start-ups and board members to collect empirical data
  • analyse data
  • write high-level academic publications on an internationally leading level
  • translate research outcomes into practice/teaching material

You must have a two-year master's degree (120 ECTS points) in Management, Entrepreneurship, Innovation Management, Industrial-Organizational Psychology, or a similar degree with an academic level equivalent to a two-year master's degree.

Approval and Enrolment
The scholarship for the PhD degree is subject to academic approval, and the candidate will be enrolled in one of the general degree programmes at DTU. For information about our enrolment requirements and the general planning of the PhD study programme, please see the DTU PhD Guide.

The assessment of the applicants will be made by Associate Professor Thomas J. Howard and Associate Professor Carina Lomberg.

We offer
DTU is a leading technical university globally recognized for the excellence of its research, education, innovation and scientific advice. We offer a rewarding and challenging job in an international environment. We strive for academic excellence in an environment characterized by collegial respect and academic freedom tempered by responsibility.

Salary and appointment terms
The appointment will be based on the collective agreement with the Danish Confederation of Professional Associations. The allowance will be agreed upon with the relevant union. The period of employment is 3 years.

The position will be based at the DTU Entrepreneurship, Centre for Technology Entrepreneurship in Lyngby, just outside Copenhagen, Denmark.

You can read more about career paths at DTU here

Further information
Further information may be obtained from Thomas J. Howard, email:

You can read more about the about DTU Entrepreneurship at

If you are applying from abroad, you may find useful information on working in Denmark and at DTU at DTU – Moving to Denmark

Application procedure
Your complete online application must be submitted no later than 2 February 2021 (Danish time)Applications must be submitted as one PDF file containing all materials to be given consideration. To apply, please open the link "Apply online", fill out the online application form, and attach all your materials in English in one PDF file. The file must include:

  • A letter motivating the application, including your research activities and ideas for the research project (cover letter, max 2-pages)
  • Curriculum vitae
  • Grade transcripts and BSc/MSc diploma, certificates, and lists of subjects with your results as well as their official translation into English
  • Excel sheet with translation of grades to the Danish grading system (see guidelines and Excel spreadsheet here)
  • Two reference contacts who may be contacted by the assessment committee

You may apply prior to ob­tai­ning your master's degree but cannot begin before having received it.

All interested candidates irrespective of age, gender, race, disability, religion or ethnic background are encouraged to apply.

DTU Entrepreneurship is amongst the international leading entities in technology entrepreneurship and helps develop an entrepreneurial culture across DTU. As part of a dynamic and evolving ecosystem, we combine practice-oriented education and research in entrepreneurship with real start-up opportunities from all DTU departments. With rigorous research at its core, the Centre builds the entrepreneurial capabilities of students, industry leaders, academics and policymakers to address unsolved problems, and together create new knowledge, methodologies and initiatives. We enable ethically minded entrepreneurs to build solutions that benefit people, society and the world. The Centre experiments with new entrepreneurial methodologies and activities to push boundaries within research and education.

Technology for people
DTU develops technology for people. With our international elite research and study programmes, we are helping to create a better world and to solve the global challenges formulated in the UN’s 17 Sustainable Development Goals. Hans Christian Ørsted founded DTU in 1829 with a clear vision to develop and create value using science and engineering to benefit society. That vision lives on today. DTU has 12,000 students and 6,000 employees. We work in an international atmosphere and have an inclusive, evolving, and informal working environment. Our main campus is in Kgs. Lyngby north of Copenhagen and we have campuses in Roskilde and Ballerup and in Sisimiut in Greenland.