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Dr Peter Balan 

Position: Senior Lecturer Dr Peter Balan
Division/Portfolio: University of South Australia Business School
School/Unit: School of Management
Campus: City West Campus
Office: EM5-32
Telephone: +61 8 830 20325
Fax: +61 8 830 20512
Email: Peter_dot_Balan_at_unisa_dot_edu_dot_au
URL for Business Card: http://people.unisa.edu.au/Peter.Balan

Dr Peter Balan is a Senior Lecturer at the School of Management at the University of South Australia Business School. He has an extensive industry background, and is active in teaching, research, and industry and community engagement.

Dr Balan holds a Bachelor of Science (B.Sc), a Bachelor of Engineering (BE), and a Master of Business Management (MBM) from the University of Adelaide, and a PhD from UniSA. Prior to academia, Dr Balan had a successful career in international marketing and general management, working for a number of businesses in Australia and Europe, before establishing his own market research and consultancy firm.

Dr Balan has numerous awards from UniSA recognising his commitment to supporting and developing students. He received one of the first UniSA Awards for Excellence in Teaching, and has since received a Citation for Outstanding Contributions to Student Learning, a Division of Business Award for Innovation in Teaching, and a second Award for Teaching Excellence. In 2010 he was awarded an Australian Learning and Teaching Council (ACTC) Citation for Sustained Innovation in Approaches to help students relate classroom teaching to industry and community application.

Throughout his career Dr Balan has continuously developed innovative approaches to teaching. He started the School of Marketing’s Marketing Project Program and the International Marketing Program, was instrumental in establishing UniSA’s Centre for the Development of Entrepreneurs, and initiated the Annual Marketing Graduate Directory. He mentors entrepreneurs for the Pank/UniSA Prize for Entrepreneurship, and initiated the Business Innovation Centre Project to support the transfer of technology from research organisations to business.

Dr Balan is an International Board Member of the Team-Based Learning Collaborative (TBLC), a member of the Australian Market and Social Research Society, and of the Australian Institute of Export. He is a member of the Editorial Advisory Board of the Journal Education + Training (ERA 2010 A*), and reviews papers for academic journals and conferences. In 2013 he gained an Emerald Literati Outstanding Reviewer Award. Dr Balan researches extensively in the areas of innovation capability, entrepreneurship and enterprise education, and has presented his research to conferences nationally and internationally.

He is an Assessor for the Office of Teaching and Learning, for UniSA Teaching Awards, and a UniSA Peer Reviewer of Teaching. He is also Curriculum Leader for the Bachelor of Business (DBBN) streams: Logistics & Supply Chain Management; Design & Innovation; Innovation & Entrepreneurship and Health Services Management


Research Projects

Innovative business models implemented by general hotels in Victoria
Conducted in 2015 with Mike Metcalfe, Paul Reynolds and Michael Browne, and funded by Le Cordon Bleu ($16,000)

Identifying new business models to improve hotel profitability
Conducted in 2013 with Mike Metcalfe, Paul Reynolds and Eva Balan-Vnuk, and part funded by Le Cordon Bleu ($5,000)

Innovation capabilities and entrepreneurial orientation of Australian Hotels
Supported by the Australian Hotels Association (AHA) and funded by the CRC for Sustainable Tourism ($53,000), this two-stage project, completed in 2010 with Adjunct Professor Noel Lindsay, conducted in-depth interviews and a national survey of hotel owner/managers and resulted in Dr Balan developing and delivering workshops on Building an Innovative Business to hotels based on the study results

Innovation capability-building in small food manufacturing businesses
funded by Food SA ($25,000)

Business Innovation Centre Project
Initiated in 2002, based on Dr Balan's own research, and funded by the DoTARS Sustainable Regions Programme ($431,000), the project aimed to support the transfer of technology from research to business and provided the model for the South Australian Government's Centre for Innovation

Harmony Project
Conducted from 1998-2002 with Dr Balan as UniSA Project Manager, this European Union Esprit 4th Framework project developed sophisticated and effective operations and management systems for business incubators and technology accelerators. As part of the project Dr Balan managed a European Union project ($95,000) to develop online training and accreditation support for the Harmony System, and a pilot testing program of the Harmony system in Australia ($250,000)


Industry and Community Engagement

Involvement with industry and the community has been an important feature of Dr Balan's work with UniSA. Over his career he:

  • Set up the SeniorPreneurs Adelaide network for people over 55 who are interested in entrepreneurship and person enterprise.
  • Developed and conducted leading-edge industry workshops in business model building, innovation capability building, corporate entrepreneurship, innovative marketing and the commercialisation of research
  • Supported the Northern Adelaide Business Enterprise Centre (NABEC) Awards by organising UniSA students to write applications for business excellence awards for small businesses in Adelaide's northern suburbs
  • Set up a website to help UniSA students and alumni apply for the Pank Prize
  • Organised the School of Management Enterprise Forum
  • Been Director of UniSA's SmartLink activity, which managed national tours of international manufacturing management experts
  • Developed and managed the Graduate Certificate in Marketing Practice that helped new marketing degree graduates gain professional employment
  • Initiated the Marketing Graduate Directory that became a valuable tool for promoting marketing graduates to industry
  • Started the Montessori School Adelaide as a new venture, and managed this junior primary school for 3 years
  • Set up a venture to deliver professional development courses for industry


Teaching Achievements

Throughout his career Dr Balan has focused on continual improvement in his teaching expertise by:

  • Implementing Team Based Learning (TBL) in undergraduate entrepreneurship courses, and using continuous evaluation to refine the method over successive course deliveries
  • Becoming a member of the US-based Team Based Learning Collaborative (TBLC), and contributing through research and committee involvement to the continual improvement of this method
  • Becoming an accredited trainer and mentor in TBL and mentoring other academics as they adopt the method
  • Piloting an approach to build the 'teaching-research nexus' through the Entrepreneurial Marketing for New Ventures course
  • Initiating and managing the School of Marketing's Marketing Project Program (1987) and International Marketing Program (1989)
  • Developing, launching and delivering the Graduate Certificate in Marketing Practice that prepared graduates for the workplace
  • Introducing marketing programs to attract international students and combining them with extensive programs to support international students educational and social development, and improve their Australian experience

Links to other sites

The Pank / UniSA School of Management Prize for Entrepreneurship

Undergraduate Entrepreneurship Course Information

Postgraduate Entrepreneurship Course Information

Team Based Learning in Entrepreneurship Courses

The Enterprise Forum

I teach the following courses

BUSS 3043Entrepreneurial Enterprises
BUSS 3048Entrepreneurial Commercialisation for New Ventures
BUSS 3049Entrepreneurial Business Planning
(This course is not currently being taught)
BUSS 5299Entrepreneurial Commercialisation
BUSS 5315Entrepreneurial Planning G
BUSS 5298Entrepreneurial Foundations

Professional associations

Australian Institute of Export

Australian Market and Social Research Society

Team-Based Learning Collaborative (Board member)


Professional Achievements

2014 UniSA Award for Teaching Excellence
For sustained, systematic research and evaluation that enables continuous improvement in learning approaches and enhances student engagement

2012 UniSA Division of Business Award for Innovation in Teaching
For the Poster Plan approach for presenting major team and individual project work for immediate feedback

2010 Australian Learning and Teaching Council (ALTC) Citation
For sustained innovation in approaches that develop students' ability to relate classroom teaching to industry and community application

2010 UniSA Division of Business Award for Supporting Student Learning
For using a live case study and diagnostic tools to engage students by giving them insight into the operations of a local business

2009 UniSA Citation for Outstanding Contributions to Student Learning
For sustained innovation in approaches that develop students' ability to relate classroom teaching to industry and community application

1991 UniSA Award for Excellence in Teaching
Awarded with Patrick Forbes for the International Marketing Program, which took students to Asia, the Americas, and Europe and started many students in their international careers

2000 Foundation Director of the UniSA Centre for the Development of Entrepreneurs
During his time as Director, Dr Balan

  • Identified research, teaching and training opportunities to make UniSA a more enterprising organisations
  • Built an active and committed team, led by a Professor of Entrepreneurship
  • Set up a governing board headed by UniSA's Chancellor
  • Developed and delivered courses on entrepreneurship and business creation for undergraduates, postgraduates and regional SA small businesses

1995 Foundation Head of the School of Marketing
During his time as Head, Dr Balan

  • Developed strong links with both industry and government
  • Was instrumental in the creation of both the Wine Marketing Research Group (1998), and the Marketing Science Centre (1988) - which is now known as the Ehrenburg-Bass Institute for Marketing Science