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   New Product and Venture Development Track

The New Product and Venture Development track emphasizes hands-on leadership for entrepreneurs and new product managers in innovative firms, such as in the high-tech industry. Many organizations today are developing into flatter and more flexible structures, where work is no longer rigidly constrained to functions (design, finance, marketing, operations, and R&D). In this new environment, the skills required of new product and program managers are similar to the skills needed by entrepreneurs in start-up ventures. Both entrepreneurs and product/program managers are responsible for marketing strategy and implementation. Both live or die by their sales and bottom-line results. Both are expected to champion new product and process innovations. Both must have multi-functional skills and be able to understand and manage all aspects of the new product development process.

The track in New Product and Venture Development is an option in the MBA Program to anticipate the growing need for these skills. The track is in a unique position to take advantage of the strengths of the Sloan School's students and faculty, as well as those resources elsewhere in the Institute.

The track prepares students to envision, develop, launch, and manage new products. The track is most appropriate for students interested in innovative mature organizations such as in the high-tech field, for students interested in working for start-ups, and for students who want to be entrepreneurs and start their own ventures.

The track's key emphasis is how to (1) take an idea or an invention and turn this into an innovation, that is, manage it to market, and (2) have hands-on leadership skills required in this multi-functional implementation process. All graduates of the track should:

A required sequence of courses on new product development provides a comprehensive perspective on the development process and introduces state-of-the-art marketing and design methodologies, many of which were pioneered by MIT faculty at Sloan and the School of Engineering. Elective courses give students substantial flexibility to tailor the track curriculum to their individual interests and needs.

Proseminars and a variety of student initiatives and extracurricular options -- such as the exciting student run 50K Entrepreneurship Competition -- provide important, complementary professional development opportunities. In addition, the Entrepreneurship Center, and research centers within Sloan and jointly with the School of Engineering, such as the Center for Innovative Product Development, may provide research opportunities for theses topics. With this flexible combination of courses and activities, the track positions students for careers as entrepreneurs and others for careers leading from new product and program managers to top management.

I. Required Track subjects (spring term of first year)

II. Required Track subjects

Select at least two of the four subjects

Select at least one of the two proseminars

III. Elective choices

Select at least two subjects from one of the categories, and one each from two of the other three categories (Pre-approved electives are listed as options).

Marketing-related electives

Entrepreneurship and Leadership-related electives

Three subject IAP series:

Innovation-related electives

Operations and Finance-related electives

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