Track G

SIG-13 Are Faculty Entrepreneurs Born or Made?

Track: Startups and Gap Funding

Target Audience: Intermediate

Kevin Lei, Emory University


The critical roles that faculty entrepreneurs play in startup success are beyond debate, but finding them is often a challenge. Some people believe entrepreneurs are a rare breed, while others maintain that they need to be developed. Two major gaps impede the success of faculty startups. One is the lack of entrepreneurial thinking by faculty of the idea-to-market pathway and their role in it. The other is the shortfall among faculty of the skills needed to create and grow startups. To bridge these gaps, some universities have created programs to train researchers in the innovation and entrepreneurial mindset. However, other technology transfer front-runners believe that teaching faculty to become good entrepreneurs may be a bit of a fool’s errand. This special interest group offers a stage to meet like-minded peers, hear different thoughts and entertain an open debate.

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