Fostering entrepreneurship that will lead to the commercialization of technology
The National Science Foundation (NSF) I-Corps program prepares scientists and engineers to extend their focus beyond the university laboratory and accelerates the economic and societal benefits of NSF-funded, basic-research projects that are ready to move toward commercialization. At Innovation Park, we host a regional training throughout the year. This training opens up a potential opportunity for companies to be nominated for the National Cohort as a result of this training and receive a $50,000 grant.
Since this is a NSF grant, it qualifies for “lineage preference” on future NSF grant opportunities, and can also be a great tool for anyone interested in applying for an SBIR/STTR grant.
Through I-Corps, NSF grantees learn to identify valuable product opportunities that can emerge from academic research, and gain skills in entrepreneurship through training in customer discovery and guidance from established entrepreneurs.
Due to the approach taken in this seminar, the training is highly experiential in that I-Corps South Instructors teach largely by asking the participants to “do”, and then allow time for instructors and class participants to provide feedback. Specifically, the class teaches customer discovery methodology that gets the researcher to create hypotheses, execute interviews, as well as iterating.