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Innovation is becoming increasingly important for Aotearoa | New Zealand industry, and students with innovative mindsets and entrepreneurial capabilities will be able to solve problems creatively, generate new ideas, recognise and seize opportunities, convert those opportunities into workable solutions that benefit society in the process. The BCom in Innovation is offered as a minor and will apply a range of business skills in applied settings preparing you for the future workplace.

Studying innovation will lead you being equipped with our current philosophy and focus being:

Teaching Philosophy

  • Utilising experiential learning as a means of developing innovation skills
  • Developing a thoughtful action orientation among students
  • Providing students with skills and experiences to build their creative confidence
  • Pragmatic application of concepts to practice with industry relevant situations

Research Themes

  • The influence of individuals’ perceptions in the pursuit of innovation opportunities
  • Strategic cognition of innovators and entrepreneurs from a practice perspective
  • Creative action as a foundational perspective 
  • Temporal aspects of strategy, innovation and entrepreneurship

Why study Innovation at UC?

  • Through UC’s award-winning business experts, students will gain insight to the current global market, the different levels of business, from family-owned to large corporations, and the latest technologies changing the face of the corporate world.
  • The flexible programme allows students to combine their Innovation minor with courses from a range of other subjects, to gain a competitive edge with expertise in key areas, such as technology, business, education, policy, and society.
  • At second and third year, Innovation students complete team consulting projects with real-world organisations to demonstrate their comprehensive knowledge. They also have the opportunity to complete a practical project implementing economic, social, and business solutions for an organisation.
  • UC is also home to the UC Centre for Entrepreneurship | Te Pokapū Rakahinonga which runs the Hatchery Incubator Programme and Summer Startup Programme – where budding entrepreneurs can join a community of like-minded students and staff, access useful resources, learn how to set up a new business venture, gain experience, or take on an internship.

Innovation courses are at 200 and 300-level. Prerequisites may apply – talk to a student advisor.

200-Level Courses
There will be four new courses offered in 2019:
INOV200 Opportunities: Here, There and Everywhere
This course introduces the entrepreneurial worldview that opportunities for innovation can be found across geographic, socioeconomic, industry, and cultural boundaries.
INOV201 Will it Fly? Feasibility Assessment on New Innovation
This course examines the significant differences between novelty and innovativeness. Using multiple types of analyses, you will ascertain whether a creative idea is feasible based on assessing physical, financial, market, regulatory, and other conditions.
INOV202 Emerging Technologies
This course focuses on how technology can be an enabler of radical changes to competition. You will be exposed to leading current technologies in multiple sector settings and understand how emerging technology may potentially contribute to a reordering of winners and losers in a competitive space.
INOV290 Enterprise in Practice (Project)
Experiential, hands-on learning is integral to honing innovation skills. This course involves students working in teams to address real-life challenges for participating profit-seeking and non-profit organisations.
300-Level Courses
There will be three new courses offered in 2020:
INOV300 Societal Impact Through Innovation
In this intensive capstone course, students work on teams with organisations to assess the connection between innovations and anticipated societal impact. You will analyse stakeholder groups and changes in a sector’s value chain.
INOV301 Implementing for Societal Impact: Tools for Innovators
In this portion of the capstone experience, you will develop a comprehensive review, identifying expected points of potential impact of innovations on society.
INOV390 Innovation Practicum
This applied, project-based course provides significant practical experience working with local and national organisations to develop and implement innovative solutions to pressing economic and social challenges.

UC offers a minor in Innovation which allows Bachelor of Commerce or Bachelor of Arts students to complement their major subject with study in a different discipline. This increases knowledge at undergraduate level as well as employability.

Students interested in completing a Doctor of Philosophy should contact our staff to discuss opportunities for supervision.

The Graduate Diploma in Commerce provides an overview of the various functions of Innovation to people with a non-commerce background. It will help students whose first degree is in Arts/Science/Engineering/Education gain an understanding of the concepts, tools, frameworks and language of business. It will also provide students who do not have a degree in Commerce or Management a pathway into Honours and Master's Programmes.

A not-for-profit UC company run by students, entré is for all tertiary students in the Canterbury region. It aims to foster an entrepreneurial spirit, to encourage innovation and creativity and to educate students in the basic elements of business development.

entré hosts competitions, workshops and networking events, including seminars designed to cover the basic knowledge essential to an entrepreneur. They are presented by industry experts. Each seminar provides relevant and practical knowledge for students hoping to enter the business world.

So, whether you are in Commerce, Engineering, Arts, Law, Science or Education – entré offers something for everyone.

The SDS Business Case Competition is an annual international business case contest developed by the Student Development Society (SDS).

The event is a unique collaboration between Victoria, Auckland, AUT, Waikato, Canterbury and Otago universities. With financial and human resources from these universities, SDS provides invaluable opportunities for students.

The competition brings together teams of four students from the six universities. Over the course of three national competitions throughout the year, the teams compete against each other before being joined by an additional six teams from around the globe for a finals week in Queenstown.

At each of the three national competitions, teams have five hours to analyse a business case and prepare their solution for the panel of five judges. The judging panel, alongside an academic from the host university, includes four individuals from the local business community. The competition is designed to emulate a real world scenario in which a team of consultants prepare and present a solution to a board of directors.

Participating in the competition in itself is a highly rewarding experience. You will build your confidence, develop team and leadership skills, hone your analytical thinking and become a polished presenter. As well as the national competitions, the finals week in Queenstown is an opportunity for you to go up against teams from around the globe to further expand your networks on a global scale and benchmark against world-class standards.

Key benefits include:

  • A point of difference for potential employers.
  • Expand your professional networks.
  • Receive fully funded travel around New Zealand.

Key dates:

  • March: Expressions of interest and trials
  • April: Round 1
  • May: Round 2
  • July: Round 3
  • August: Finals week in Queenstown

For all enquiries:

The MGMT228 Chinese Business Practices and Culture study tour provides students with the opportunity to participate in the Second Language Promotion Programme (SLPP) at Zhejiang Gongshang University, one of UC’s partners in Hangzhou, China. For a period of three weeks students take courses on Chinese business practices and culture, and interact on a daily basis with Chinese students and businesses. Upon completion of the SLPP programme the tour proceeds to Shanghai where we visit a number of multinational (mostly Kiwi) companies with operations in China.

The study tour is open to anyone who has completed a year of study at UC and at least two commerce papers. The course starts mid-November.

This course is limited entry. The maximum enrolment is 30.

180 Degrees Consulting is the world’s largest student-driven consultancy, with operations in over 150 universities, spread over 35 countries. Each year the Canterbury branch trains and supports small teams of students as they carry out projects to help charities and not-for-profit organisations achieve a greater social impact.

These projects can range from marketing plans to growth strategies, and students receive the guidance of industry mentors throughout. Organisations are assisted in the development of innovative, sustainable and practical solutions, while our students build their skill-sets and make meaningful contributions.


Key contact:

Jamie Collins

Chair of Entrepreneurship & Innovation
Meremere 302b
Internal Phone: 93021

For more information on studying Innovation

contact a member of staff

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