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Entrepreneurship – How to create a legitimate business?

Take the first step towards your entrepreneurial journey! With our course, you’ll learn, apply, and grow your skills to achieve your goals.

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CIVIS focus area
Society, culture, heritage
Open to
  • Bachelor's
  • Master's
  • Phd
Field of studies
  • Business and Management
  • Blended Intensive Programmes (BIP)
Course dates
5 June - 5 July 2024

The recent entrepreneurship boom in innovation-driven economies leads many students and novices to launch a business. In today's upheaval environment, young businesses without necessary backgrounds suffer from a lack of legitimacy that prevents them from accessing resources necessary for the growth of their activity.

Through a blended intensive program (BIP), this project aims to empower students leading an entrepreneurial project to develop strategies to construct, maintain, and repair the legitimacy of their business. Using the content of this course and their own experience, students will learn original ways to conduct their business and lead their operations in a complex environment.

This project has three objectives:

  1. At the theoretical level, this course will address organisational legitimacy and social judgment. Legitimacy is largely neglected in students' curricula, especially in management studies. Legitimacy is widely accepted in the academic world as one of the primary intangible resources for entrepreneurs to access financial resources, develop their networks, and survive.
  2. At the practical level and during this project, we invite students who lead projects to work on the legitimacy of their projects. Thus, students learn from theory and apply it to practice. Students will develop strategies to manage their projects' legitimacy throughout this process.
  3. The originality of this project lies in the connection between research and practice. Experts at the New Venture Legitimacy Chair of Aix-Marseille University have created an exclusive framework; this tool, named Legitimacy Action Canvas (LAC), enables us to let students experience unique live case study sessions. LAC is composed of three steps:
  • in the first step, students will be able to identify the audiences of their project and hierarchies them;
  • in the second stage, students will apprehend the audience's expectations and their relevance to their project;
  • finally, they will develop strategies to address each couple of audiences/expectations using predefined and innovative strategies.

Therefore, our unique program is the perfect way to empower your journey with the right business legitimacy strategies. Don’t miss out on this opportunity to take your entrepreneurial journey to the next level!

Main topics addressed

  • Business model
  • Organisational legitimacy
  • Reputation
  • Open innovation
  • Networking
  • Intellectual property

Learning outcomes

The predominant learning outcome is to reach a comprehensive understanding of the legitimacy of a business and its outcomes. Students will learn to establish a coherent strategy for gaining acceptance of their environment using an innovative framework. This course's second outcome is assessing the legitimacy level and developing appropriate strategies to construct, maintain, or repair legitimacy. The third outcome of this course will also be to empower participants' legitimacy and help them get the resources they need.

At the end of this course, all the students should be able to:

  • exercise skills related to networking and co-working;
  • understand their regulative environment and intellectual property;
  • implement an open innovation strategy and identify the outside resources;
  • assess the legitimacy of a business and to improve it;
  • develop strategies of legitimisation;
  • apply the above elements to their legitimacy.
Dates: 5 June - 5 July 2024 Total workload: 150 hours
Format: Blended ECTS: 6*
Location: Aix en Provence, France Language: English (C1)

*Recognition of ECTS depends on your home university.

Physical mobility

The physical part will take place between 1-5 July 2024, in Aix en Provence (France) and will include:

  • Lectures on collaboration, co-creation, and open innovation;
  • Self-working time: students are supposed to work on their projects as part of their class work and evaluation;
  • Social events will be organised, with the presence of entrepreneurs and actors in the region's entrepreneurial ecosystem. Students will have the opportunity to develop their network and find opportunities for collaboration;
  • Evaluation: students will be asked to develop strategies based on the course elements and present them in front of the students and teaching staff.


  1. day 1: Legitimacy and why you should care about your social environment
  2. day 2: Networking and co-working
  3. day 3: Open Innovation
  4. day 4: Creative workshop and company visit
  5. day 5: Final pitch of projects and evaluation 

Virtual part

The virtual part is organised into three sessions. We will start with an introduction to the course, the presentation of the instructors, and the complete outline of the course:

  • 6 & 7 June => Fitting your business model within the environment

Then, an introduction to legitimacy and to Canvas of legitimacy is presented to the students. Besides, business model planning and project presentations are in demand. The virtual lectures continue with the strategies that entrepreneurs can develop to construct their legitimacy, notably by transferring academic research to a usable technology:

  • 13 & 14 June => Fitting your business within the legal environment

Virtual sessions aims to prepare students for the physical part and provide them with extensive reading and reflexive works to encourage their critical thinking. Students will then be provided with written material composed expressly for this course so that they can study all the subjects presented in the lectures independently.


This course is open to students at CIVIS member universities, with high interest in Entrepreneurship. 

Participants should also have a good level of written and spoken English, entrepreneurial mindset, problem-solving and networking skills. 


NB: Visiting Students - Erasmus Funding Eligibility

To be eligible for your selected CIVIS programme, you must be a fully enrolled student at your CIVIS home university at the time you will be undertaking the programme. Click here to learn more about the eligibility criteria.

Students from CIVIS’ strategic partner universities in Africa cannot apply for participation in this course.

Application process

Send your application by filling in the online application form by 25 February 2024, also including:

  • CV,
  • motivation letter including a description of your business project and its current stage.

The selection process is based on the presented project's excellence, the candidate's professional background, and the academic experience in management courses.

Apply now


Evaluation of the performance of the students during this course will consist of:

  • an active presence during the course (10%);
  • at the end of the virtual part, we will ask students to write a report about their business project and their legal strategy (20%);
  • during the physical part, students will be asked to work individually on the Canvas of legitimacy and complete it for their business. The completed Canvas will then be presented during the course (50%);
  • during the physical part, students will be asked to do assignments like group case studies to practice the theories (20%). 

Blended Intensive Programme

This CIVIS course is a Blended Intensive Programme (BIP): a new format of Erasmus+ mobility which combines online teaching with a short trip to another campus to learn alongside students and professors across Europe. Click here to learn more about CIVIS BIPs.

GDPR Consent

The CIVIS alliance and its member universities will treat the information you provide with respect. Please refer to our privacy policy for more information on our privacy practices. By applying to this course you agree that we may process your information in accordance with these terms.

  1. Antonis Livieratos, Assistant professor of entrepreneurship, National and Kapodistrian University of Athens, Department of Business Administration. Antonis has a long experience in working with startups from various positions. He was the co-founder of several startups and has worked more than 15 years as a coach and consultant for startups in various industries. He is currently heading the Technology Transfer Office and the Business accelerator of the NKUA (Archimedes Center of Research, Innovation and Entrepreneurship).
  2. Yiannis Dimitrakopoulos, Assistant professor of operation research, National and Kapodistrian University of Athens, Department of Business Administration. Yiannis is Technology Transfer Office Manager at Archimedes Center of Research, Innovation and Entrepreneurship of NKUA.
  3. Maria Dolores Escat Cortes, Associate professor, Department of Business Organization, Faculty of Economic and Business Sciences, Universidad Autónoma de Madrid. Maria works on the people management and co-working among startup teams.
  4. Antonin Ricard, Associate professor, IAE graduate school of management, Aix-Marseille University. Antonin is the dean of IAE and the co-founder of the Chair of New Venture Legitimacy.
  5. Ali Ghods, Assistant professor of entrepreneurship, IAE graduate school of management, Aix- Marseille University. Ali is a member of the Chair of New Venture Legitimacy.