Marie Curie Alumni Association (MCAA) General Conference took place between 5 & 7 March 2021. EIT Alumni organised a session ‘Entrepreneurial journey: How to turn your idea into reality’.
The EIT Alumni session, moderated by Sara Ricardo, Board Member of MCAA, included discussion with Chaitanya Dhumasker (graduate from the EIT Climate-KIC label programme at the Technical University of Berlin, co-founder and CEO of MonitorFish GmbH, EIT Change Award Winner 2020) and Dorine Duives (assistant professor at the Department of Transport & Planning at Delft University of Technology, coordinator of the Active Mode Lab, CTO of City Analytics a spin-off of Delft University & Technology research supported by the EIT Urban Mobility, Winner of the 2nd place of EIT Woman Award 2020).
The aim of the session was to share with participants the journey of turning an idea into a successful project, guide them what is needed on the way, what kind of support they should look for and how to stay motivated. Participants had a chance to learn about personal insights and testimonials from taking the entrepreneurial journey and find out the opportunities the European Institute of Innovation & Technology (EIT) has to offer to aspiring entrepreneurs.
Chaitanya shared how his company MonitorFish evolved to focus on the aspect related to having an idea, looking for funding, highlights and downsides of entrepreneurship.
‘The possibility of being an entrepreneur is fascinating.’ – Chaitanya Dhumasker
Dorine presented the perspective of becoming a researcher and entrepreneur, being herself, an assistant professor and CTO of CityAnalytics. The main takeaways from her journey are:
- Always remain investigative - why the product is needed, is it already on the market or not, will there be buyers?
- Dare to dream.
- Be proactive and persistent, talk with people in the network.
- Find support asap in companies and institutions that work with start-ups as they have seen it all and know what are the most critical issues for start-ups in different phases.
The session was closed with a Q&A session between the panellists and the audience.