The Alumni Seminar 2021 is divided into an online phase and attendance phase in San Luis Potosi, following the concept of blended-learning.

Each phase consists of different stages and types of activities, which are presented in the following program structure. The guest speakers and expert talks are announced one week before the actual event on the platform. During the seminar, the speaker structure is continuously developed and adapted to the requirements and demands of the participants.

You will be developing your potential business ideas for environmental solutions in teams.

Important: the program agenda is timed to the German CET (GMT+2) time but will also consider the time difference to countries in Latin America and the Caribbean. Exceptions to this rule are the time specified for the submissions, which is given in Mexican time (UTC -5).

Program structure


Phases and Modules

Online Phase 1. (June – August)

The online phase is open to practitioners in resources management with a focus on Latin America.
In this phase, you will learn the needed skills to develop business ideas for the environmental sector, as well as drafting the respective business models for high-potential business ideas.

Online Phase 2. (September – October)

The online phase 1 is followed by an evaluation and 15 – 25 candidates will be selected to participate in the online phase 2 and the attendance phase.
Once you are among the successful candidates, you will be expected to validate your business ideas and models through initial market testing (e.g. through prototyping) and refine your business models.

Attendance Phase. (6 days in November, in San Luis Potosí, Mexico)

Depending on the pandemic situation by late summer 2021 we would like to invite the selected candidates to an attendance phase. México. The exact date is to be confirmed. Alternatively, this phase will also take place online.
In this phase, you will learn how to refine your business models and develop a pilot project concept.

Post-Event Phase (November – December)

You will prepare results of the attendance phase for a booklet. You will have the opportunity to establish new contacts for future collaboration with the participants of the Alumni Seminar 2020 “Green Innovation MENA” and other ITT alumni entrepreneurs.

Type of Activities

Each program phase consists of different types of activities:



The virtual workshop sessions are designed to create practical and empowering guidance, inputs and exercise for participating Alumni. Coaches and experts will demystify and lay out the most effective paths to develop environmental business ideas for real world application. The workshops will cover powerful tools and platforms for business development tailored to environmental sectors.

Self-study – Online Course

The online course for environmental entrepreneurs (focus on resource recovery and safe reuse – RRR) uses a combination of virtual lectures, in-class exercises, self-study, case-based group works and exchanges with start-ups and established RRR businesses. The modules summarize state of the art research and knowledge on RRR business development. The exercises have the purpose to facilitate hands-on learning by the students.

Expert inputs and networking

Special guest lecturers that present cutting-edge information on inspiring and innovative topics in the areas of energy, water, and natural resource management and development. The topics are chosen in line with the interests of the Alumni. These are also part of the opening and closing activities of the program.

Coaching session

The coaching sessions are digital, individual or group meetings with our coaches and mentors. They will offer you direct input and feedback on how to develop and apply your particular idea in your given field and go through practical learning steps


Schedule of the Online Phase 1.


In each phase of the Alumni Seminar you will be working on different online modules. Each module is organized in different short work packages.

June 8th

5 – 7 pm

(German time)

Opening and welcome meeting

• Overview of the programme

• Introduction of participants and team

• Find your working group

June 14th

5 – 7 pm

(German time)

Kick-off workshop

• Understanding the approach and scope “Resources, Recovery and Reuse (RRR) Entrepreneurship” online course Module 1-3

• Peer session on business opportunities in environmental management

• Inspirational input by guest speaker

• Start of the Self-Study Module 1: Identifying Business Opportunities

June 28th

5 – 7:30 pm

(German time)

Coaching session

• Feedback session on self-study progress

• Questions & Answers in plenary

• Small groups and individual coaching interventions

Until July 2nd

11:59 pm

(Mexican time)

Completion of Self-Study Module 1 and Submission of the Work Packages 1 and 2

Start of the Self-study Module 2: Scanning the Business Environment

July 12th

5 – 7:30 pm

(German time)

Expert input session

• Introduction by a guests speakers with an inspiring business cases

Until July 30th

11:59 pm

(Mexican time)

Completion of Self-Study Module 2 and Submission of the Work Packages 1 to 4

Start of the Self-study Module 3. Blueprinting the Business Model

August 9th

5 – 7:30 pm

(German time)

Coaching session

• Feedback session on self-study progress

• Questions & Answers in plenary

• Small groups and individual coaching interventions

Until August 23rd

11:59 pm

(Mexican time)

Complete the Self-Study Module 3 and Submission of the Work Packages 1 to 3

Until August 30th

11:59 pm

(Mexican time)

Submission of the final pitch deck of your final Business Model

September 6th

5 – 7:30 pm

(German time)

Final oral pitch workshop of all business ideas and models

• Short oral pitches of teams projects

• Questions & Answers

Mid September

Review & Selection for the Online phase 2

• Review of pitch and pitch-deck evaluation

• Selection of the most promising ideas/models/Alumni

September 9th

Announcement of candidates selected to participate in the Online phase 2 and attendance phase

Dates for extra sessions (if necessary), for webinars with experts or coaching or team building exercises will be communicated and published on the website during the online phase 1.

Schedule of the Online Phase 2.


In each phase of the Alumni Seminar you will be working on different online modules. Each module is organized in different short work packages.

Oct 4th

5 – 7 pm

(German time)

Testing and prototyping, development of action plans, overview of remaining RRR modules

Oct 19th

3:30 – 5:30 pm

(German time)

Insights to planning operations, coaching

Nov 1st

5 – 7 pm

(German time)

Basic finances for green start-ups, coaching

Nov 17th

5 – 7 pm

(German time)

Innovation Strategies, coaching

Nov 29th

5 – 7 pm

(German time)

Pilot/MvP Design to further validate and build your business model

Dec 6th




Terms of Reference


While developing the potential business ideas and sustainable business models, please adhere to the following guidelines:

  • The business ideas and models need to be developed in groups of two or three alumni from at least two different study generations or countries
  • The business ideas and models need to solve a real life resource management challenge in Latin America and the Caribbean and should be technically and financially viable
  • The business ideas and models will be shared among the participants for discussion and peer feedback
  • The results of your business ideas and models, your name or image may be featured in reports, articles or communication material covering the Alumni Seminar and subsequent activities (e.g. screenshots)
  • Online meetings will be recorded and shared among the participants
  • Each team owns the Intellectual Property (IP) rights of their respective business ideas and models

Evaluation Criteria

  • Regular attendance during the online sessions (min. 50%)
  • Submission of assignments for each work package of the Online Course
  • Submission of a pitch deck and delivery of an oral pitch presentation for the developed business idea and business model
  • Feasibility and potential impact of the developed business ideas and models (solving a real problem related to natural resources management potential positive contribution to our environment and communities

What you get out of this seminar depends on you!

Participation Modes:

Easy: Join the online sessions and get a taste of mastering your own ideas.

Moderate: Join the online sessions and at least 2 hours of weekly assignment – initiating the innovation process for your future idea solution.

Master: Join the online sessions and make use of the provided coaching to develop a fine-tuned, innovative idea ready for implementation. The number of hours of weekly assignment will depend on what you want to achieve during this phase.



  • The online phase is free of charge

  • For the attendance phase, please note that only nationals of DAC listed countries and Germans, who currently live and work in Latin America can receive funding for flight and accommodation including breakfast in San Luis Potosí, Mexico.