Stanford MBA Course Spotlight: Biodesign Innovation

In the real world, medical doctors, engineers and MBAs must learn to speak each other’s language in order to find answers to stubborn health problems. To facilitate that cross-communication, the Stanford Graduate School of Business and School of Medicine — plus the departments of mechanical engineering and bioengineering — jointly offer a course in Biodesign Innovation.

In this video, a team of graduate students are running with an idea to manufacture an affordable device for home dialysis that lessens the chance of patients developing internal infections.


Three real-world products have been born as biodesign class projects since the business school became involved with the program in 2004, yet creating companies isn’t the program’s top goal, said Stefanos Zenios, a member of the business school faculty who co-teaches the course with Paul Yock, the Martha Meier Weiland Professor of Medicine, and Todd Brinton, a clinical assistant professor of medicine (cardiology).

“We are teaching students the process of innovation,” said Zenios. “It is important for us to educate students about how to identify medical needs, invent solutions for those needs, and determine if the solutions are commercially viable. Whether they actually create a business is inconsequential. Being able to analyze that process is what matters the most.”

For more on this unique course bringing diverse graduate students together, read the complete story on the Stanford website.

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