New NSF Program Innovation Corps: Bringing Innovations out of the University Research Labs

bridges vol. 31, October 2011 / Noteworthy Infromation

icorps_h_small.jpgOn July 28, the National Science Foundation launched the NSF Innovation Corps (I-Corps), a new tool to employ research coming from university laboratories with commercial potential. This new program aims to link technological, entrepreneurial, and business expertise as a private-public partnership to bring innovative inventions out of the lab. The focus will be on near-term applicable technologies with visible benefits for the economy and society.

The NSF notes: "While the knowledge gained from NSF-supported basic research frequently advances a particular field of science or engineering, some results also show immediate potential for broader applicability and impact in the business world."

This concept follows, as NSF Director Subra Suresh explains, the traditional US-approach "of investing in - and deploying - technological advances derived from a foundation of basic research."

{access view=guest}Access to the full article is free, but requires you to register. Registration is simple and quick – all we need is your name and a valid e-mail address. We appreciate your interest in bridges.{/access} {access view=!guest} The I-Corps initiative will also create an award to strategically identify promising concepts; hence, the initiative is able to leverage NSF's investment in basic research for technology innovation. The award provides the impetus for public-private partnerships: "Members of the private sector will provide critical support to this NSF effort by sharing their knowledge and experience with NSF and I-Corps awardees. These technology developers, business leaders, venture capitalists, and others from private industry will act as I-Corps mentors." These mentor volunteers will be crucial to the network of expertise, helping to enhance the I-Corps awardees' ability to transport their scientific and engineering results into potentially successful technologies.

The I-Corps program will initially support up to 100 projects per year, with funding of $50,000 per project.

For further information, please see: