School:Istanbul Technical University
- 1 HISTORY
- 2 INSTITUTIONAL OVERVIEW
- 2.1 Promoting Student Innovation and Entrepreneurship
- 2.2 Encouraging Faculty Innovation and Entrepreneurship
- 2.3 Actively Supporting the University Technology Transfer Function
- 2.4 Facilitating University-Industry Collaboration
- 2.5 Engaging with Regional and Local Economic Development Efforts
- 3 RELATED LINKS
Founded in 1773 with the name “Mühendishane-i Bahr-i Hümayun” (Imperial School of Naval Engineering) during the reign of Mustafa III, Istanbul Technical University is a prominent and pioneering university of engineering and architecture with many innovative studies in science, technology, research and development. İTÜ, as a university mainly composed of graduate engineering schools and research laboratories, works closely in collaboration with enterprises and other economic and social partners. Our university facilitates knowledge and technology transfer to industries, management centers and briefly to all societies. To do this, İTÜ has created many Techno-Science parks, incubation centers, entrepreneurship and innovation center, and technology transfer office. This way, İTÜ offers a favorable environment for students to build a successful career in their professions, to improve themselves, to seek internship opportunities, and to conduct research projects.
The purpose of existence for the Istanbul Technical University is to expand the borders of knowledge and its applications in science, technology and art for contributing to the sustainable community.
Istanbul Technical University’s vision is to become a leading, international university through its expertise and creativity in science, technology and art.
- Education targeting change and improvement
- Outcome-oriented, interdisciplinary research to be beneficial for society
- Effective cooperation in international relations
- Versatile, effective, and sustainable university-industry cooperation (UIC)
- Strengthening the ITU perception in public; participatory and transparent governance and with increasing own revenue
Promoting Student Innovation and Entrepreneurship
In Istanbul Technical University, there are 246 student clubs that collaborate with industry and organize various case studies, seminars, and competitions to encourage entrepreneurship and innovation.
TEDxIstanbulTechnicalUniversity: TEDx is an event carried out within TED in terms of content and concept, which was initiated to bring science, arts, and entertainment content organizations to a wider audience and to spread TED culture. TEDxITU student club organized this event for the first time in 2013 with the theme "Highlights" in order to keep the TED culture alive at ITU and to enable the voices of every person who has ideas worth sharing. After a 5-year hiatus, in 2018, the second event was organized with the theme "Layers", which is interpreted as "the process we build upon something or the hidden layers underneath the obvious shell –hidden causes-.".
Different Futures Summit: Different Futures Summit is organized by the ITU Alumni Association Club for 4 years. The summit aims to shed light on education life and career journey and to empower students to make a difference in and out of departments by bringing alumni and students together.
Information Technologies Summit: Information Technologies Summit is organized by the Management Engineering Society for 15 years. In the sessions, technology-focused issues are handled by relevant company representatives and leading names in the IT industry. Participating companies in the IT field find the opportunity to announce new information technology products, services, and human resources activities and to communicate with participants from within the sector. In the interactive section, it is aimed to increase the interaction of the participants with each other with various activities such as Speed-networking, Likemind, Coffee Time, and Cocktail hours.
Management Sciences Congress: Management Sciences Congress is organized by the Management Engineering Society for 24 years. Sessions cover the topics which are in Turkey and the world's focus and handled by the respective company representatives and leading names in the sector. In addition, the speakers inspire students who are planning their careers by sharing their work and life experiences with the participants.
Future Shapers: Future Shapers was organized by the IEEE Student Chapter and aimed to develop the participants' problem-solving skills by approaching global problems in a logical framework, developing teamwork and innovative solution generating skills. The event included panels, sessions, and case studies which are based on UNDP's 17 Sustainable Development Goals. The final 2 projects determined by the jury of 3 entrepreneurs were sent for Region 8 evaluations.
Industrial Engineering Student Summit: The event is organized by the Industrial Engineering Society for 29 years. It consists of career events and panels. The main theme and sub-topics are determined each year according to new and developing technology trends. C-level managers from companies and successful panelists in fields such as arts and sports present their experiences from different sectors.
Plan Your Cross-Departmental Route: The event is organized by the Industrial Engineering Society aiming to introduce different departments. It is carried out in a panel format with managers working in the same department in different sectors, accompanied by a moderator.
Outliers: Outliers is organized by the Entrepreneurship Club for 5 years. The event is focused on people who have progressed with their own motivations as speakers, instead of stereotyped career plans.
Entrepreneurship Summit: In this event, students attended various sessions about the current topics of entrepreneurship and listened to the experts in the ecosystem. It also offered many interactive activities with an aim to help students to expand their networks.
ITU GINOVA Tuesday Talks: The event is organized by ITU Entrepreneurship and Innovation Center (GİNOVA) and it aims to bring together inspiring speakers on entrepreneurship and ITU residents.
Entrepreneur Chats: The event was organized by the student chapter of The Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) and Entrepreneurs Network Turkey (ENET). It aimed to learn what entrepreneurship is, its difficulties, how individuals should follow it, by chatting with people with entrepreneurship spirit.
Women in Business: Organized by the Economics Society, the event has allowed hundreds of students to listen to the success stories of women in business and the difficulties along their way.
Global Opportunities in Business and Investment (GOBI) : Created by the Investment Club, GOBI is the ITU’s first international student summit that brings C-level speakers and students from all around the world together.
Sector Days: ITU Sector Days take place every year with the participation of the leading firms from different sectors. The aim of the event is to lead the students who are struggling to choose a career path. Senior managers from the leading enterprises inspire students by sharing their career stories and knowledge about the sector. Students can ask questions not only during the sessions but also in the breaks.
Coffees Are On The Alumni: In this event, students have the opportunity to get to know an alumnus or alumna from ITU and benefit from their experiences while enjoying free coffee!
Startup Huddle Istanbul: Startup Huddle is an international program of the Global Entrepreneurship Network(GEN), which has 10 million members with 20,000 partners in 160 different countries.Bimonthly, one or two early-stage startups find the opportunity to make a presentation on the Startup Huddle and they can get feedback from other entrepreneurs, mentors, and participants. Each presentation takes 6 minutes and followed by 20 minutes of the feedback section. The aim of the program is to develop local entrepreneurs and strengthen the entrepreneurship ecosystem.
Encouraging Faculty Innovation and Entrepreneurship
ITU Entrepreneurship and Innovation Application and Research Center (GİNOVA) is founded in May 2014 to inspire entrepreneurship culture in ITU; encourage ITU students and faculties for taking initiative based on creativity and innovation, to provide them for finding necessary links for improving their skills and abilities; besides all these to research for expanding the limits of the knowledge about innovation and entrepreneurship. The center aims to gather and augmenting people who are interested in innovation and entrepreneurship as well as increasing interactions between different departments. Being a meeting point for the students who study in different departments of the ITU, promoting them to generate ideas together, and bring them into action are other objectives of the center.
ITU Center for Social Innovation
ITU Center for Social Innovation aims to generate novel and effective solutions in addition to innovative ideas for social, economic, and environmental issues by prioritizing social benefit. The Center targets carrying out multidisciplinary research and development projects in cooperation with internal and external stakeholders in order to develop solutions based on social innovation.
The objective of ITU Social Innovation Research and Application Center is to further enhance the innovation capacity of ITU while generating solutions for public problems by the joint effort of university-industry-public stakeholders via the use of ITU's well-established education and eminent research capacity enriched with ITU's vision of being a leading, international university through its expertise and creativity in science, technology, and art. ITU Social Innovation Research and Application Center intends to enable the active participation of ITU students to the projects and training activities developed for generating sustainable and effective solutions to social problems focusing particularly on process improvement, product and service innovation, social support, and public awareness issues.
ITU’s contributions to the nation’s socio-economic development will increasingly continue by cultivating its students-young engineers, researchers, architects, entrepreneurs, artists, and managers- to be not only competent and creative in science, technology, and arts but also sensitive towards the needs of the society from which they generate.
How to Workshops
Failure Week: Failure Week was organized by the collaboration of ITU GİNOVA and ITU Entrepreneurship Club with the motto of "Ever tried ever failed no matter try again fail again fail better". In Failure Week, inspiring people, entertaining games, workshops, competitions, and failure stories met with the participants. Up to now, it has been prepared three times, and hopefully, the fourth one will be in March 2021.
Olympia Academy: Inspired by the Greek philosopher Socrates, Olympia Academy which is organized by ITU Entrepreneurship Society, encourages people to come and learn together. Throughout the year, the Academy provides training on the 21th century competencies and the knowledge that an entrepreneur should have. The aim of the program is that the attendees improve themselves by utilizing the offered tutorials in a wide spectrum: learning photoshop programs, programming in python, mobile applications, preparing business canvas, brand management, market research, Design Thinking, digital marketing etc.
From Within The Industry: From Within The Industry is organized by ITU Industrial Engineering Students society.Events’ aim is to attendanding students from ITU and a certain firm come together for a day and undertake some activities planned by the firm with the aim of testing decision-making abilities of the students and ensuring that they know the enterprise better. These activities include for example case-studies and workshops.
Learning Community: Was organized by ITU UIF 2020 Cohort Team. Aims of the project are letting participants to experiment with various tools used in innovation, engagement with an online learning environment which encourages individuals to learn more and socializing with fellow students in the online semester.
Fire-Up Changemakers Program: Fire Up Changemakers is a competition led by the collaboration of ITU Entrepreneurship, Innovation Center (GİNOVA) and Boğaziçi University Innovation Center (BRIGHT) and METU Entrepreneurship Research and Application Center (ODTÜ GİMER). The program aims to build a student community that will create change on campus by focusing on improving students' entrepreneurship and social innovation skills. Students who successfully complete the program will be invited to individual interviews and successful students will be nominated for the Stanford University Innovation Fellows Program.
Dijifikir / DigIdea: Dijifikir is an e-business idea competition organized by the Management Engineering Society that brings young entrepreneurs with investors and provides entrepreneurs the chance to make their dreams come true.
Presentation Workshop and Presentation Competition / Elevator Pitch: This competition is organized by ITU GİNOVA to give students the ability to express their ideas easily in a short time and to improve their presentation skills. ITU students applying for the competition are trained in the pre-competition presentation workshop to express their ideas in a short time. After this training, a pre-selection is carried out and the students who pass the pre-selection are entitled to participate in the final. In the final, students are asked to present their business ideas by making a presentation in 90 seconds, and awards are given to the students who rank.
UçArı / (The name of the competition is a pun which both means Uç Arı (Fly Bee) and Uçarı (Frivolous)): UçArı is a national case study competition organized by the Industrial Engineering Society which enables students to challenge themselves, develop their business skills, expand their knowledge of cultures and career opportunities through international education and internship opportunities.
Innovation Boost: Innovation Boost is organized by ITU Entrepreneurship Society in November 2020. The aim of the competition is to spread the entrepreneurial culture to students in university by bringing them with experienced entrepreneurs, investors and trainers. Students will be able to develop their own business ideas with the help of the trainings they receive during this long-term competition, which will last for 8 days. At the end of the process, teams that show potential and are ranked will receive various awards.
Startup Weekend Istanbul: Startup Weekend is a three-day program where aspiring entrepreneurs can experience startup life. In hundreds of cities around the world. Sustainable Startup Weekend Istanbul is organized by collaboration of ITU GINOVA, ITU Entrepreneurship Society and with the partnership of Turkish-German University and Marmara University. The event aimed at aspiring entrepreneurs to experience start-up life under the sustainability subject. The event took place online on May 7-9, entrepreneurs from many countries came together and devoted their weekends to entrepreneurial journeys.
Actively Supporting the University Technology Transfer Function
İTÜNOVA Technology Transfer Office
İTÜNOVA Technology Transfer Office (TTO) offers academic studies and new technologies developed in Istanbul Technical University (ITU) to the benefit of the industry to meet their goals and help with the development of Turkey by adding value. Founded as the technology transfer interface of ITU, İTÜNOVA TTO aims to connect knowledge and industry for commercialization.
As a body to facilitate access to and generate and commercialize scientific and technological information, and support technology transfer and entrepreneurship, İTÜNOVA Teknoloji A.Ş. was established in February 2013 and was named İTÜNOVA TTO under the TÜBİTAK 1513 Program in January 2014. İTÜNOVA Teknoloji AŞ, the "Technology Transfer Office" of ITU, is particularly positioned as a "company" that expeditiously provides services in private sector standards in partnership with ITU Foundation and ITU ARI Technopolis.
The vision of ITUNOVA TTO is to increase the scientific and technological knowledge production capacity of ITU on an international level and commercialize the generated knowledge to the benefit of the society. Its mission is to enhance scientific and technological knowledge production capability through academy-industry collaboration and implement new technologies built on this knowledge, increase the radius of action for additional research making use of national and international funds, protect the resulting knowledge, and provide suitable platforms for entrepreneurs who will create this knowledge.
Facilitating University-Industry Collaboration
ITU Career Summit: The summit is organized by ITU Career Center for 6 years. The summit enables ITU students to get detailed information about internship and career opportunities, to apply for positions suitable for their academic education and skills, and for companies to reach qualified human resources of the new age in a short time.
Let’s Innomind: Let’s Innomind is organized by collaboration of ITU GINOVA and Organik Kimya (Organic Chemistry) in October 2021 for the first time. The aim of the event is to bring university students and industry together for a sustainable future. The Industry partner determines the main problems of the program and gives expert opinion to the teams. Students work together for two months with their teams’ and propose solutions. The 10 teams that pass the pre-selection qualify for the final presentation. The team or teams that are successful in the final get the right to do internships to develop their projects at Organic Chemistry, the main sponsor of the program.
The event has been organized by the Industrial Engineering Society for 28 years. It consists of career events and panels. The main theme and sub-topics are determined each year according to new and developing technology trends. C-level managers from companies and successful panelists in fields such as arts and sports present their experiences from different sectors.
ITU Arı Teknokent
ITU ARI Teknokent aims to be a global technology development area by:
- providing proper environment and opportunities to enable technology companies and entrepreneurs develop and commercialize technologies,
- contributing technological development in Turkey and the success of generating entrepreneurial ideas, and
- using ITU’s academic power to accomplish innovations rather than follow.
In order to leverage technology production in Turkey, ITU ARI Teknokent aims to:
- be a hub for R&D and innovation activities in Turkey, particularly Istanbul, and
- support, improve, and steer the synergy arising from ITU’s academic knowledge and R&D companies.
Active in ITU Ayazağa Campus, ITU ARI Teknokent has been founded on an area of 120.000 m2 with 10 buildings, enabling over 3600 successful R&D projects (367 of which patented), collaboration with 2178 academicians and approximately $1 billion exports to contribute to the national economy.
Today at ITU ARI Teknokent, more than 330 R & D companies have reached 7000 employees to develop more than 700 projects annually.
Within its 4 entrepreneurship programs, ITU ARI Teknokent appeals to startups, companies and projects at different stages.
ITU Cekirdek Incubation Center: ITU Cekirdek is a one-stop-shop for entrepreneur growth, providing everything from business model development training to mentorship, prototype funding, investment meetings, office space, and client productions. It is established by ITU and ITU ARI Teknokent in 2012 and backed with the strength of ITUNOVA TTO. It has been awarded as the 2nd best incubation center in Europe and the 3rd best incubation center in the world according to the UBI Global’s ranking of ‘University-Affiliated Incubation Center’ with its 3494 supported start-ups, 1097 incorporated start-ups, and ₺797 million total investment received by start-ups.
In order to include global start-ups and entrepreneurs in the program, İTÜ Çekirdek announced its name as ITU Seed Accelerator for International Startups, and received applications from over 100 startups from 35 countries.
Big Bang Start-up Challenge: Big Bang is an organization that is founded by ITU Cekirdek, brings entrepreneurs and investors together, where entrepreneurial groups make presentations on the stage for investment. In Big Bang 2021, startups have reached to ₺458 million investment and had the opportunity to be accepted to ITU Cekirdek Incubation Center. Additionally, it offers a setting in which business owners may interact with investors, potential clients, members of the press, and stakeholders.
ITU Magnet Advanced Level Entrepreneurship Center: ITU Magnet is a center which was established in 2016, that brings entrepreneurs that have marketed their initial tech-based product in the ecosystem together, paving the way for collaboration through dynamic workplace, and acts as a springboard for companies to find new customers and investment. ITU Magnet has been designed to serve up to 2700 m2 to over 300 entrepreneurs, over 75 scale-ups with a rate of %150 scale-up growth.
Innogate International Accelerator Program: Innogate is an international accelerator program for market-ready companies, that are willing to enter the US and UK markets by Innogate’s multifaceted program, including access to international connections,market penetration, business modeling and strategy development opportunities together with training,mentorship and counseling benefits.
During the 15 cohorts of Innogate International Acceleration Program, 105 alumni firms have developed business with $41 million total investment.
Engaging with Regional and Local Economic Development Efforts
Along its 250 year-old history, Istanbul Technical University has been and in the future will continue to be the birthplace of many important architects, economists, engineers and leaders.
In the entrepreneurship trend that started in the recent past, ITU aims to be a center of attraction in the entrepreneurship society.. To achieve this goal, ITU founded ITU ARI Teknokent in 2002 as the first step of the university-industry cooperation initiative. This was followed by ITU Çekirdek Incubation Center in 2011, Innogate International Acceleration Program and ITU Center of Innovation and Entrepreneurship in 2014 and scale-up center ITU MAGNET in 2017. Thanks to these and many more institutions ITU contributes to regional and local economic development efforts.