Assistant professor of entrepreneurship at the Management Department of TiSEM.
Can you introduce yourself?
My name is Lien Denoo. I am an assistant professor of entrepreneurship at the Management Department of TiSEM (Tilburg School of Economics and Management). I have worked at Tilburg University since the fall of 2017. I’m originally from Belgium (I got my bachelor’s, master’s and PhD degrees from Ghent University), but before moving to Tilburg, I lived in Los Angeles for four years, where I was a visiting PhD student and later a postdoctoral researcher at the University of Southern California’s Marshall School of Business.
Research and education are two important pillars of academia. What do they mean to you?
They are both very important, and it’s great when they can reinforce each other. I study entrepreneurship, especially young high-tech ventures and how they come into being, develop business models, acquire resources, and grow. I love how, when doing research, you can really go in-depth into a very specific and narrow topic. At the same time, many research findings mean little unless they can be translated into practice. For me, that usually means translating research findings into actionable conclusions that can be used by entrepreneurs, public policy, and in my teaching. I also love it when past students became intrigued by the course(s) I taught them and approach me because they want to write a thesis on the course topics, ultimately becoming researchers themselves. Research and teaching are thus two vital parts of academia that go hand in hand, and that can both influence and improve each other.
You are now one of the initial members of the TYA. How is that like?
It’s an honor and a challenge at the same time. It’s an honor because we really get to make decisions on virtually everything: what will our mission be, how will we organize ourselves, which activities will we do, how will we select new members…? We were really given “carte blanche”, which makes being part of the TYA both fun but also challenging. As its inaugural members, there’s a responsibility to make the TYA work, so there’s also some pressure. But most of all, it’s a great opportunity to help guide university policy and to get a direct connection with the people in charge, which makes it feel that we are working on something important.
I am sure you all have topics that are important to you. What is your main focus in the TYA?
Although I’m originally from Belgium and my native language is Dutch, I moved to Tilburg directly from Los Angeles, and I therefore identify strongly with international hires who move to the Netherlands and were not very familiar with its academic system or way of life. For that reason, one of my main interests in the TYA is ensuring that the concerns of young faculty members, and especially international ones, are heard and taken care of. On top of that, I also care a lot about supporting young faculty members in advancing their careers, and help them jump through the hoops of academic life.