Zoë Backbier

Zoë Backbier
You get the opportunity to work on real-life business cases and interact with entrepreneurs and industry experts.
Zoë Backbier
Innovation and Entrepreneurship
Study start date
Study end date
Previous education
International Business Administration - Radboud University

Zoë Backbier is a Master's student Innovation and Entrepreneurship.

What do you like about the programme/specialisation and why? How has the programme/specialisation challenged you (in relation to your previous education)?

What I was specifically looking for after finishing my Bachelor's was a Master's programme that puts emphasis on putting theory to practice. This programme provides a unique blend of theoretical knowledge and hands-on experience through assignments such as the hackathon and the Master's buddy project. You get the opportunity to work on real-life business cases and interact with entrepreneurs and industry experts. It challenged me to take in the information that is provided during the courses and translate this to real-life cases, allowing me to develop a deep understanding of the entrepreneurial process and the mindset required to succeed in this competitive field.

What do you think about the atmosphere in class (for example the relationship between students and with the teachers/researchers)?

The programme consists of enthusiastic students and highly involved and experienced teachers, which causes an interactive study environment that stimulates students to challenge each other and enthuses them to think outside of the box. The group is not too big which makes interaction during classes easier and pleasant.

What do you find most challenging in your Master’s (specialisation)? Have you encountered any obstacles?

Like many other Master's programmes, the programme is challenging and requires a high level of commitment and dedication. It specifically demands a significant amount of autonomy and independent study, which can be challenging for students who are accustomed to more structured and traditional educational programmes. At first, I found it challenging to get accustomed to this type of approach after being used to a more guided structure in the Bachelor's. However, the programme provided me with enough tools and resources needed to succeed, including guidance from supportive and experienced teachers. Eventually, this switch challenged to think outside of the box which made me more self-reliant and independent on a professional and personal level.

Are you currently doing an internship? Or what is your thesis about?

Currently I am writing my thesis on how co-working spaces can facilitate a feeling of community for independent entrepreneurs, causing them to interact and share knowledge. I specifically enjoy interviewing entrepreneurs to talk about their experiences and see how co-working spaces could further contribute to their success.

Why do you think is it important that there are people out there with this degree? What are your plans once have received your Master's degree?

In order for companies to keep developing, managing innovation is of high importance. Both startups as well as well established companies have great and innovative concepts, however, fail to successfully bring them to the market because to a lack of well thought out strategies and management. In order to successfully bring an innovative concept to the market there is a big need for specialised managers who can guide companies from startups to successful enterprises. And if you are thinking about starting your own business, this programme will provide you with all the right tools to build a strong brand and increase your chances of success.