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Free Online Course on Customer-Centric Innovation

RWTH Aachen University is offering free online course on Customer-Centric Innovation. This course is part of the “Managing Technology & Innovation: How to deal with disruptive change” MicroMasters program designed to teach the critical skills needed to be successful in this exciting field.

In this course, applicants will learn to take on the competition by creating successful and innovative business ideas through a thorough understanding of customer needs. The course will start on July 19, 2017.

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Course At A Glance

Length: 6 weeks
Effort:  6-8 hours pw
Subject: Business & Management
Institution: RWTH Aachen University and edx
Languages: English
Price: Free
Certificate Available: Yes, Add a Verified Certificate for $149
Session: Course Starts on July 19, 2017

Providers’ Details

The RWTH Aachen University is among the leading technical universities in Europe measured by its academic output, the quality of its graduates, and by the quantity of its external funding. A unique location in the center of Europe bordering Belgium and the Netherlands induces an international and technology driven climate for Aachen as a University City as well as for the whole region. Founded in 1870 the RWTH holds 260 institutes in nine faculties and has more than 42,000 Students, about 7,000 of whom are international.

About This Course

Addressing real customer needs is the core factor of managing innovation successfully. Exactly this is the task of the first stages of an innovation project, also called the Frontend of Innovation (FEI). In this course, you will learn about key concepts and methods of generating customer-centric business ideas and innovative concepts.

Often, the first stages of an innovation project are called “fuzzy”, as they are considered to be less structured and less predictable. However, after studying this course, you will get a different perspective: The Frontend of Innovation indeed can be managed by skill and dedicated methods and does not need to rely on luck.

You’ll study sources of information on customer needs as well as different approaches to market research and customer co-creation. In addition, the course reviews the latest methods for generating market insights and how to turn them into promising concepts prior to entering the formal product development process.

Why Take This Course?

You will learn screening activities and how to evaluate concepts based on concept testing with customers or rapid experimentation. This course will also connect theories of innovation and various models, explaining innovation success with actionable knowledge for industry practice.

Learning Outcomes

  • The nature of successful innovation processes
  • How to manage the “fuzzy” frontend of innovation from opportunity recognition to concept validation
  • How to transfer trends and insights from the external environment into business opportunities
  • How to understand what customers really want by identifying latent needs with the “jobs-to-be-done” framework, Outcome Driven Innovation, or Empathic Design
  • How customer co-creation and Netnography complement internal ideation management


Dr. Frank T. Piller

Head of the Technology and Innovation Management Group and Co-Director of the TIME Research Area, RWTH Aachen University


No mandatory prerequisites but successful completion of MTI001x is beneficial.

How To Join This Course

  • Go to the course website link
  • Create an edX account to SignUp
  • Choose “Register Now” to get started.
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