Centre for Rural Economy

Staff Profile

Dr Robert Newbery

Reader in Enterprise and Innovation


Roles and Responsibilities

Robert is a Reader in Enterprise and Innovation and has worked extensively in Asia, Africa, Europe and North America. He has founded and run a number of entrepreneurial businesses having a PhD, MSc, MBA and BSc.

He is Principal Investigator for a Comic Relief funded project ‘Scaling innovative rural distribution for farmer inputs’ in Kenya and is developing the Rural Business Network development concept with colleagues internationally.

Robert is particularly interested in how entrepreneurship is being used for development in both the 'Global North' and 'Global South' and is actively supporting the Entrepreneurship Educator Foundation for East Africa.

He is the Head of the Marketing, Operations and Systems discipline group at the Newcastle University Business School.

Google Scholar: Click here.



Robert is interested specifically in rural entrepreneurship in both the developed and developing context, enterprise education and the evaluation of entrepreneurship and innovation programmes.

He is conducting research looking at the intersection of entrepreneurship and poverty, with a focus on smallholder farmers and agro-pastoralists in Eastern Africa. He also monitors and evaluates the impact of entrepreneurship and innovation programmes, with a current involvement with research commercialisation programmes and the impact of serious games upon entrepreneurial outcomes.

Geographies of interest

- UK and Europe (particularly as regards farming entrepreneurship and rural business models; business associations)

- East Africa (entrepreneurship and poverty, business models and innovative supply chains; networks of support)

- West Africa (business models and development)

- Eastern Europe (emerging rural business models)

Ph.D students

I am pleased to talk to potential Ph.D students with interesting proposals that link into my research interests and / or geographies of interest.


Business operates in an increasingly complex world and Robert's teaching / facilitation reflects this through combining academic theory with personal theory and reflection.


MKT3014 New Product Development (Module leader)
This module examines entrepreneurship and innovation management from a strategic marketing perspective; enabling students explore principles in relation to entrepreneurship and innovation management, specifically new product/service development. This module will be delivered through introducing relevant literature, learning experiences, and industry-linked case studies; so that theory and practice go together.


NBS8497 Entrepreneurship (MBA) (Module leader)This module provides an overview of the mind-set, methods, and activities that support the entrepreneurial process. An entrepreneurial venture, whether occurring in an independent, corporate or social context, is the result of a unique set of circumstances involving the entrepreneur / team, a business opportunity, and the identification and marshalling of key resources needed to capture the opportunity. All of this must be done in the context surrounding the business opportunity. The module takes an experimental approach where students develop a viable business model whilst critically reflecting upon the relevance of entrepreneurship within their chosen career.

NBS8111 International Entrepreneurship The overall aim of the module is to develop an understanding of the theoretical and practical aspects of developing and growing a small business internationally and advance cross-national comparisons of entrepreneurial activity. Accordingly, students will develop insights, tools, concepts and skills necessary to understand the challenges and opportunities of international entrepreneurship.