Unlock the Potential of your Ideas

Startup School for genomics and biodata

Learn to think like an entrepreneur in a highly supportive environment for early-stage genomes and biodata innovation arising from Campus science, with our peer institutes Wellcome Sanger Institute and the European Bioinformatics Institute leading the way.

Why? Because we all share the same mission to help improve healthcare and lives.

Our lean virtual Startup School is designed for genomics and biodata scientists but we also welcome participants from related disciplines and those whose skills and expertise can help enrich, diversify, and launch the early ideas generated by each cohort from the Wellcome Genome Campus.

Startup school at the wellcome genome campus

2023 - 2024 Applications now closed

Applications for the fourth edition starting in November 2023 are now closed. However, if you'd be interested in joining the programme in its next edition please register interest here

Register interest
Startup School Mentors 2022/23
Course Modules

The course has ten sessions in total: eight core sessions, plus an introduction session at the start and a Grand Finale right at the end. The core sessions can be accessed below, with dates and times. The date for the introductory session is the 16th of November 2023, and for the Grand Finale will be the 18th of April 2024.

30 years

The UK biotech sector is relatively young, and after 30 years it already includes mature, revenue-generating companies, as well as innovative start-ups building new technologies, and new business models.

The right place

In 2019 the Cambridge Cluster housed approx. 456 small and large biomedical companies and over 3,000 in the IT and tech fields, with a combined turnover of £11bn.

Key sector

The sector enjoys strong government support and with record levels of private and public investment poured into biotech over the last decade, the sector’s position as a key strategic sector is set to continue after the COVID-19 pandemic.


There is a lot more to the healthcare industry than just the big pharma. Areas with potential high growth are cell and gene therapy, orphan drugs, CRISPR gene editing, robotics, telemedicine, and AI.


Dr Julia Wilson, Associate Director at the Wellcome Sanger Institute

“After experiencing first hand the last three editions of Startup School, I believe this has been an extraordinary and immersive experience for participants. The breadth and depth of the science, the curiosity of them all and the leaps of thinking. It has been remarkable to see the ideas develop and emerge.

An amazingly skilled cohort of scientists who are based in Academia, but would be comfortable navigating industry and understand the route from an idea to a product- they have the skills, the knowledge and the confidence now from the Startup School to do this. It’s a mini-bootcamp which aims to give you the tools needed to build your own venture with meaningful insights to help consolidate your plans.”

Shai Vyakarnam in black and white
Dr Shai Vyakarnam, Visiting Professor at Bettany Centre for Entrepreneurship University of Cranfield

“I was delighted to see the outline of the programme. It is spot on in terms of unlocking the curiosity of  the scientist in learning how to make an impact with their science and taking the early first steps.

They will learn about the various options open to them and gain inspiration from those that have made the journey to impact.

Role models are crucial for the young scientist to test their own ambitions and career choices as are practical tools, frameworks and a peer group that can support each other.


Dr Andrew Leach, Head of Industry Partnerships, EMBL – EBI

“I am very excited to see the Startup School taking its very first cohort of participants. It is clear that there is a huge interest on the Genome Campus in entrepreneurship. The programme will provide tools, access to networks, encouragement and support that will help bridge the gap between having an exciting idea and turning this into a real startup enterprise. The programme will also provide an excellent vehicle to strengthen the links between academia and industry; having worked for many years myself within industry this is something I am particularly passionate about”.

Diversity + Collaboration = Innovation

The Wellcome Genome Campus Startup School promotes equality and celebrates inclusion, we believe that diversity and collaboration are key to innovation. We welcome participation from everyone who shares our mission to improve healthcare and lives.

Have a business idea or want to explore entrepreneurship?

Applications are now closed, but you can register your interest in the programme here.

Register interest