6 August 2018 to 7 September 2018
Europe/Zurich timezone
- Applications are closed - Selection May 20th -

About CESP


15th March: Application opens

30th April: Application deadline

20th May: Selection panel

6th August-7th September: CESP



Nowadays, there is an increasing focus on entrepreneurship as an important factor for employability and economic growth, and entrepreneurship education is receiving an increased emphasis in Europe from primary to secondary school. At the same time, CERN, recognising and valuing entrepreneurial development as a key factor for economic development, is ramping up its attention to entrepreneurship education. 

During recent years, start-ups based on CERN technologies have created commercially viable products and services for library management, solar collectors, drones, advanced detectors, and several other applications. 

Emerging from this phenomenon is the need for high-quality hands-on training in entrepreneurship, which can complement and reinforce the theoretical education basis offered during university studies. 

This need has been identified by CERN and assigned a technological dimension aiming at extending the benefits of CERN’s expertise and knowledge in this field to the younger generations of entrepreneurs. 

CERN is uniquely placed to successfully deliver this goal, being able to provide a high-quality scientific environment with access to the latest technological equipment, where new technologies are constantly refined and developed, together with an open culture allowing students to interact with inventors and technical experts, promoting equal access to knowledge and excellence. Finally the CERN Knowledge Transfer Group has wide experience in technology transfer and intellectual property management, as well as in entrepreneurship education programmes.



CESP consists of a five-week residency at CERN, during which the students will stay full time on site. 10 students will be selected for the first version of CESP during the summer of 2018. The students will plunge into CERN technologies, explore potential avenues and identify exploitable ones.


1 - Explore 

The first week will focus on introducing the students to CERN through a series of lectures and tours, as well as technology identification, through which the students will interact with CERN personnel to identify potential new technologies through feasibility studies. 


2 - Evaluate 

The students will then move to work on evaluating the commercial potential of technologies, emphasising the possibility of exploitation through a start-up company. During this period they will receive coaching in idea evaluation. 


3- Exploit 

The students will start to develop a plan on how to commercialise the technology they have chosen in the Evaluation fase. They will also start building a product prototype where applicable. The students will receive relevant coaching.


The programme will consist of two distinct elements: 

  1. Internal training from CERN Knowledge Transfer Group: Members of the CERN Knowledge Transfer Group will provide day-to-day coaching on technology entrepreneurship. Subsequently, a CERN Knowledge Transfer Officer (KTO) will be assigned to each participant based on the technology domain he/she has chosen to work with and will also introduce and coach them in this specific domain. 
  2. Training from external experts: In addition, training sessions will be offered in various fields by relevant external experts. 



The CESP will be free for the participating students as the programme is funded by Strangeworks, a Quantum Computing Company. This ensures an equal opportunity regardless of their nationality, gender, race or religion to participate in a high-quality training programme.

Each Participant must however ensure that he or she has health and accident insurance cover that is adequate for the CERN region (Switzerland/France).

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