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Can the U.S. Government “Out-Startup” Silicon Valley?

October 12, 2011 Leave a comment

Lean LaunchPad, Steve Blank, Stanford and the Nat’l Science Foundation Set Out to Prove They Can Starting Sunday, Oct. 9

From BusinessWire:

“One hundred of the best U.S. scientists and engineers are about to start one of the most exciting science experiments ever attempted — can you turn Rocket Scientists into startup founders? It might be called the U.S. Government versus tech incubators like Y-Combinator, as the National Science Foundation (NSF) creates a full-fledged incubator, complete with mentoring, for 100 teams of top engineers and scientists.

The National Science Foundation, which funds all non-medical science and engineering research in the U.S., is giving out 18,000 grants a year — with a $7 billion annual budget for innovation. This new Innovation-Corps program will infuse “startup” culture, training and mentoring for the best science and engineering funded by NSF–taking the best projects out of the science labs and universities to speed privatization and job creation, following the path of incubators like TechStars and Y-Combinator…”

READ FULL ARTICLE [web]
NSF I-Corps Program [web]
I-Corps 1st Round of Awardees Announced [web]
Stanford Technology Ventures Program [web]
I-Corps introduction by Steve Blank [web]

Uncle Sam to university inventors: School is in session

August 13, 2011 Leave a comment

[The Kauffman Foundation] found that post-docs with entrepreneurial training served as critical bridges between the university and the businesses that were interested in licensing university technologies.

From Vivek Wadhwa of Washington Post:

“The National Science Foundation (NSF) announced at the end of July that it is setting up a public–private partnership to turn the most promising breakthroughs from its funding portfolio into successful start-ups. The partnership, called Innovation Corps (I-Corps), will teach participants the basics of entrepreneurship, connect them with mentors, and provide $50,000 in seed funding. This is essentially a Silicon Valley-style incubator for scientists and engineers.

If past is prologue, the vast majority of the start-ups to emerge from this program will fail. Even venture capitalists only claim to have a one-in-ten batting average. The government can’t possibly do better. But I am optimistic that I-Corps will be a game changer. In the long term, it will likely produce returns that are orders of magnitude greater than the $5 million per year that will be spent. That’s because it addresses one of the core problems of the university research system, narrowing the gap between science and innovation…”

READ FULL ARTICLE [web]
About the NSF I-Corps program [web]
NSF Innovation Corps Website [web]

Intel puts $30M into New Science & Tech Centers; Announces CFP

August 6, 2011 Leave a comment

The investment is part of a larger $100 million program designed to increase university research and accelerate innovation…

From Business Wire:

SANTA CLARA, Calif.–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Aimed at shaping the future of cloud computing and how increasing numbers of everyday devices will add computing capabilities, Intel Labs announced the latest Intel Science and Technology Centers (ISTC) both headquartered at Carnegie Mellon University.

These centers represent the next $30 million installment of Intel’s recently announced 5-year, $100 million ISTC program to increase university research and accelerate innovation in a handful of key areas. As with previously announced ISTCs for visual computing and secure computing, the new centers encourage tighter collaboration between university thought leaders and Intel. To encourage further collaboration, the ISTCs use open IP models with results publically available through technical publications and open-source software releases.

“These new ISTCs are expected to open amazing possibilities,” said Justin Rattner, Intel Chief Technology Officer. “Imagine, for example, future cars equipped with embedded sensors and microprocessors to constantly collect and analyze traffic and weather data. That information could be shared and analyzed in the cloud so that drivers could be provided with suggestions for quicker and safer routes…”

READ FULL ARTICLE [web]
INTEL Press Release [web]
CFP – New Science & Technology Center – 2012 [web] Deadline: 09/02/2011
More about the ISTC program [web]

Institutions Around the World Answer New York’s Call for Applied Science Campus Proposals

August 3, 2011 Leave a comment

The mayor hopes the plan will propel New York past Silicon Valley as the world’s leading tech center.

From Crain’s NY Business:

“After the city’s bedrock financial sector tanked in 2008, Bloomberg administration officials met with hundreds of entrepreneurs, venture capitalists, chief executives and community leaders and instructed them to come up with a “game changing” idea for the local economy.

The result of that brainstorming is at hand: Top applied sciences schools from around the world are scrambling for the city’s blessing to build a campus here. When Mayor Michael Bloomberg gave a mid-July speech about the competition at a Crain’s conference, Cornell University sent at least 30 representatives, including trustees and its president…”

READ FULL ARTICLE [web]
ANNOUNCING THE RFP FOR NEW/EXPANDED RESEARCH CAMPUS [web]
Cornell’s repsonse: Growing the ‘technology ecosystem’ of the future in NYC [web]

Kauffman Foundation Accepting Proposals for 2011-2012 Entrepreneurship Dissertation Fellowship Grants

May 16, 2011 Leave a comment

Program will award grants of $20,000 each to 15 doctoral scholars

DEADLINE: Sept. 14, 2011
RFP: http://sites.kauffman.org/KDFP/kdfp_rfp.cfm

Press Release

KANSAS CITY, Mo., May 16, 2011 – The Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation announced today that the 2011-2012 Kauffman Dissertation Fellowship Program’s online Request for Proposals is available now through Sept. 14, 2011. The Kauffman Foundation will award up to 15 Dissertation Fellowship grants of $20,000 each to Ph.D., D.B.A. or other doctoral students for the support of dissertations in the area of entrepreneurship.

“Since its establishment in 2003, the Kauffman Dissertation Fellowship Program has awarded fellowships to 123 world-class scholars,” said Robert J. Strom, Ph.D., director of Research & Policy at the Foundation. “We are eager to see the contributions that this new group of Fellows will make to the important field of entrepreneurship.”

This competitive program is open to students seeking doctoral degrees from accredited U.S. institutions of higher education. This program is intended for students who are in the process of formulating their dissertation proposals as well as doctoral candidates with recently approved dissertation proposals. It is expected that applicants will complete their dissertations by the conclusion of the 2012-2013 academic year.

Graduate students interested in applying for the Kauffman Dissertation Fellowship Program can find the Request for Proposals online at www.kauffman.org/kdfp. All proposals must be submitted via the online application by 5:00 p.m. Central on Wednesday, Sept. 14, 2011. Please direct all questions to kdfp@kauffman.org.

Recipients may use the grant to pay for costs associated with their dissertation, including data collection and analysis, databases, specialized hardware/software and travel.