AUTM Conference New Orleans: Mardi Gras for Tech Transfer

Industry Posts

AUTM Conference New Orleans: Mardi Gras for Tech Transfer

As one major party in New Orleans ends, another one begins. However, instead of catching beads and moon pies, attendees will hope to receive fresh information on all things regarding technology, business, and entrepreneurship. From February 22nd until the 25th, New Orleans will play host to the Association of University Technology Managers (AUTM) annual meeting. For four jam-packed days, technology transfer personnel from around the country will do nothing, but learn new concepts, ideas, and ways to improve how they bring cutting edge research into the marketplace. Sounds like Mardi Gras level fun to us here at The University of Alabama Office for Technology Transfer (UA-OTT).

There are several events at the meeting we simply do not want to miss. The first occurs on Sunday night, when Steve Blank delivers a fireside chat à la the 32nd U.S. President FDR. For those that don’t know Steve Blank, he is a serial entrepreneur that influenced the creation of the Business Model Canvas. Additionally, he is the author of the Four Step to the Epiphany, which is credited with starting the Lean Startup movement. You can read more about Steve and his work here.

 

 

The very next morning we will be treated to another fantastic speaker by the name of Steven Johnson. Don’t know who this is? Mr. Johnson is a nine-time author, and his latest book How We Got to Now: Six Innovations That Made The Modern World will be accompanied by a PBS series. In short, Johnson is a big idea, big theory generator whose background has been shaped by a wide array of disciplines. We are very interested to hear his ideas on emerging technologies and how they will shape tomorrow. Check one of his TED talks below.

 

 

Additionally, we are looking forward to the AUTM Venture forum, featuring roundtable discussion from some of the nation’s top venture capitalists. Another part of the Venture forum will be a business plan competition finale. Since our office includes two business plan competition winners, we can’t wait to see the pitches. Next, we will be attending the Industry Innovation roundtable discussion. This is led by AUTM president Jane Muir, who will moderate discussion amongst industry professionals. We hope this will help us gain crucial insight on how academic institutions can engage various industries with new technology.

Finally, probably the most important and notable of the week is the Physical Science Unconference. (Well to us anyway.) Our very own Dr. Whitney Hough will be leading this event on subjects from semiconductors to advanced materials. The unique style of the unconference means that topics generated and voted on by the audience will be discussed. By the end of the event, all attendees are guaranteed to meet one another. This is a can’t miss event according to the AUTM schedule. Hey, their words, not ours. All jokes aside, we do hope you will join Dr. Hough on Wednesday.

As we all know, conferences are about learning and we here at UA-OTT are certainly very eager to learn. Since taking in all the information available would be like trying to catch every strand of beads tossed at Mardi Gras, we have narrowed down what we hope to learn into three specific tracks: industry academic partnerships, and marketing. These tracks should be very beneficial for a smaller tech transfer office like ourselves, thereby we hope to learn to more effectively engage in meaningful industry partnerships, foster student and faculty entrepreneurship, and efficiently market all of the value we can provide. Keeping these tracks in mind, we plan on attending any or all of the following events. We hope to see you there!

Monday

[list type=arrow_list]
  • The Tidal Wave of Campus Entrepreneurship
  • SIG: Economic Development and Startups
  • Challenges and Success of Non-Urban Tech Transfer Offices
  • Turnaround: What to do when your Tech Transfer Office needs a Reboot
[/list]

 

Tuesday

[list type=arrow_list]
  • Invention Disclosure Analysis: Best practices to increase evaluation throughput
  • How to Bridge Most Valuable Innovations to the Best Potential Industrialization Opportunities
  • AUTM Venture Forum
  • Venture Capital Panel Discussion
  • SIG: Is Mobile Everything?
  • SIG: University of Concept Funds
[/list]

 

Wednesday

[list type=arrow_list]
  • Industry Innovation Roundtable
  • Physical Science Unconference
  • Beyond Basic Innovation Management
  • Managing Student Created IP: Models to consider and lessons learned
[/list]

 

Aside from learning from others, the AUTM national meeting is an outstanding time for networking. We wanted to tell a little about ourselves; in the case you read this dynamic blog post and can’t help but meet us.

Dr. Richard P. Swatloski

Don’t let the name intimidate you, Dr. Swatloski is a networking all-star and you almost Rick_Swatloskicertainly will run into him at some point during the four days. Dr. Swatloski did his undergraduate and graduate degrees at The University of Alabama, where he received a Ph.D. in Chemistry. He has been the director at UA-OTT since 2012 and he leads all of the office’s commercialization and economic development efforts. If you see him around, don’t be intimidated by the last name. You can simply call him Rick.

 

Dr. Whitney Hough

150104_MW_ott_headshotsLike Rick, Dr. Hough did her undergraduate and graduate at The University of Alabama, where she received a Ph.D. in Chemistry and an MBA. Today, she is the Assistant Director and Venture Development Associate at UA-OTT. This means she assists out with all the office’s commercialization and economic development efforts along with spinouts from the university. Dr. Hough was also very instrumental in setting up UA-OTT’s intern programs. Because of her, students can receive hands on experience in assessing and analyzing new technologies. Earlier we mentioned there would be two previous business plan competition winners traveling with us. Dr. Hough won the statewide Alabama Launchpad business plan competition.

 

Ben Bickerstaff

150104_MW_ott_headshotsBen is a Graduate Research Assistant at UA-OTT. There he helps Dr. Hough with implementing commercialization strategies and helps the interns learn how to properly assess new technologies for commercialization potential. Ben is a graduate of The University of Alabama’s College of Engineering and is a current MBA candidate as well as engineering Master’s student. Ben accounts for the other half of previous business plan competition winners. He also won the Alabama Launchpad competition for his company, Bidsters.

 

We hope that you will connect with all of us through the AUTM connect app and LinkedIn. Also, find us on Twitter as we will be tweeting using the official conference hashtag, #AUTM2015. We are looking forward to learning loads of new things and making many new connections. Also, as Alabama football fans, we certainly hope this trip to New Orleans will be better than our last one. So, if you see us around don’t be a stranger, we always answer to anything beginning with our favorite two words: Roll Tide!

 

As one major party in New Orleans ends, another one begins. However, instead of catching beads and moon pies, attendees will hope to receive fresh information on all things regarding technology, business, and entrepreneurship. From February 22nd until the 25th, New Orleans will play host to the Association of University Technology Managers (AUTM) annual meeting. For four jam-packed days, technology transfer personnel from around the country will do nothing, but learn new concepts, ideas, and ways to improve how they bring cutting edge research into the marketplace. Sounds like Mardi Gras level fun to us here at The University of Alabama Office for Technology Transfer (UA-OTT).

There are several events at the meeting we simply do not want to miss. The first occurs on Sunday night, when Steve Blank delivers a fireside chat à la the 32nd U.S. President FDR. For those that don’t know Steve Blank, he is a serial entrepreneur that influenced the creation of the Business Model Canvas. Additionally, he is the author of the Four Step to the Epiphany, which is credited with starting the Lean Startup movement. You can read more about Steve and his work here.

 

 

The very next morning we will be treated to another fantastic speaker by the name of Steven Johnson. Don’t know who this is? Mr. Johnson is a nine-time author, and his latest book How We Got to Now: Six Innovations That Made The Modern World will be accompanied by a PBS series. In short, Johnson is a big idea, big theory generator whose background has been shaped by a wide array of disciplines. We are very interested to hear his ideas on emerging technologies and how they will shape tomorrow. Check one of his TED talks below.

 

 

Additionally, we are looking forward to the AUTM Venture forum, featuring roundtable discussion from some of the nation’s top venture capitalists. Another part of the Venture forum will be a business plan competition finale. Since our office includes two business plan competition winners, we can’t wait to see the pitches. Next, we will be attending the Industry Innovation roundtable discussion. This is led by AUTM president Jane Muir, who will moderate discussion amongst industry professionals. We hope this will help us gain crucial insight on how academic institutions can engage various industries with new technology.

Finally, probably the most important and notable of the week is the Physical Science Unconference. (Well to us anyway.) Our very own Dr. Whitney Hough will be leading this event on subjects from semiconductors to advanced materials. The unique style of the unconference means that topics generated and voted on by the audience will be discussed. By the end of the event, all attendees are guaranteed to meet one another. This is a can’t miss event according to the AUTM schedule. Hey, their words, not ours. All jokes aside, we do hope you will join Dr. Hough on Wednesday.

As we all know, conferences are about learning and we here at UA-OTT are certainly very eager to learn. Since taking in all the information available would be like trying to catch every strand of beads tossed at Mardi Gras, we have narrowed down what we hope to learn into three specific tracks: industry academic partnerships, and marketing. These tracks should be very beneficial for a smaller tech transfer office like ourselves, thereby we hope to learn to more effectively engage in meaningful industry partnerships, foster student and faculty entrepreneurship, and efficiently market all of the value we can provide. Keeping these tracks in mind, we plan on attending any or all of the following events. We hope to see you there!

Monday

[list type=arrow_list]
  • The Tidal Wave of Campus Entrepreneurship
  • SIG: Economic Development and Startups
  • Challenges and Success of Non-Urban Tech Transfer Offices
  • Turnaround: What to do when your Tech Transfer Office needs a Reboot
[/list]

 

Tuesday

[list type=arrow_list]
  • Invention Disclosure Analysis: Best practices to increase evaluation throughput
  • How to Bridge Most Valuable Innovations to the Best Potential Industrialization Opportunities
  • AUTM Venture Forum
  • Venture Capital Panel Discussion
  • SIG: Is Mobile Everything?
  • SIG: University of Concept Funds
[/list]

 

Wednesday

[list type=arrow_list]
  • Industry Innovation Roundtable
  • Physical Science Unconference
  • Beyond Basic Innovation Management
  • Managing Student Created IP: Models to consider and lessons learned
[/list]

 

Aside from learning from others, the AUTM national meeting is an outstanding time for networking. We wanted to tell a little about ourselves; in the case you read this dynamic blog post and can’t help but meet us.

Dr. Richard P. Swatloski

Don’t let the name intimidate you, Dr. Swatloski is a networking all-star and you almost Rick_Swatloskicertainly will run into him at some point during the four days. Dr. Swatloski did his undergraduate and graduate degrees at The University of Alabama, where he received a Ph.D. in Chemistry. He has been the director at UA-OTT since 2012 and he leads all of the office’s commercialization and economic development efforts. If you see him around, don’t be intimidated by the last name. You can simply call him Rick.

 

Dr. Whitney Hough

150104_MW_ott_headshotsLike Rick, Dr. Hough did her undergraduate and graduate at The University of Alabama, where she received a Ph.D. in Chemistry and an MBA. Today, she is the Assistant Director and Venture Development Associate at UA-OTT. This means she assists out with all the office’s commercialization and economic development efforts along with spinouts from the university. Dr. Hough was also very instrumental in setting up UA-OTT’s intern programs. Because of her, students can receive hands on experience in assessing and analyzing new technologies. Earlier we mentioned there would be two previous business plan competition winners traveling with us. Dr. Hough won the statewide Alabama Launchpad business plan competition.

 

Ben Bickerstaff

150104_MW_ott_headshotsBen is a Graduate Research Assistant at UA-OTT. There he helps Dr. Hough with implementing commercialization strategies and helps the interns learn how to properly assess new technologies for commercialization potential. Ben is a graduate of The University of Alabama’s College of Engineering and is a current MBA candidate as well as engineering Master’s student. Ben accounts for the other half of previous business plan competition winners. He also won the Alabama Launchpad competition for his company, Bidsters.

 

We hope that you will connect with all of us through the AUTM connect app and LinkedIn. Also, find us on Twitter as we will be tweeting using the official conference hashtag, #AUTM2015. We are looking forward to learning loads of new things and making many new connections. Also, as Alabama football fans, we certainly hope this trip to New Orleans will be better than our last one. So, if you see us around don’t be a stranger, we always answer to anything beginning with our favorite two words: Roll Tide!

 

About the Author