©2016 Michigan Economic Development Corporation

Governor's University Summit Encourages Public/Private Sector Collaboration

Thursday, September 25, 2003

Jennifer Owens
(517) 335-4590

Recommendations Focus on Strengthening Technology Transfer

Governor Jennifer M. Granholm today praised the recommendations unveiled at the Governor’s University Summit on Economic Development and Collaboration, saying that the new strategies for technology transfer will greatly aid Michigan’s economic development efforts.

“This summit was an excellent opportunity for representatives from the private sector and university officials to discuss ways to partner to move technology and ideas from the research lab to the manufacturing floor,” Granholm said. “The recommendations will serve as a blueprint for moving university-generated research to market with the help of Michigan’s great entrepreneurs.”

Approximately 200 high-level university officials from across the state met yesterday in Lansing to develop technology transfer strategies and review recommendations that resulted from workgroups conducted through the summer months.

The summit featured presentations and discussions of the recommendations, and culminated with the following action items:

  • Strategies for strengthening collaboration aimed at bolstering public/private technology transfer.
    • All 15 state universities will be engaged and involved in tech transfer.
    • Conduct a study identifying private sector needs and university research expertise.
    • SmartZonesSM (the state’s network of high-tech clusters) will coordinate private/public sector networking events.
  • Strategies for supporting a long-term sustained technology transfer plan for the state.
    • Develop a statewide formal science and technology agenda and a focused plan to leverage federal resources.
    • Develop several effective models to specifically promote technology transfer.
    • Develop statewide technology transfer gap funding budget.
    • Develop a strong SmartZone connection to university technology transfer offices.
  • Strategies for accelerating the process that university transfers research to private sector markets.
    • Develop pre-seed and seed funding infrastructure.
    • Establish a strong relationship infrastructure including service providers, internal groups, required management talent, subject matter experts, investors, the private sector and the SmartZones.
    • Establish a solid policy platform to ensure that there are no barriers to smooth technology transfer.
  • Fostering a culture that promotes tech transfer: identifying best practices and actions.
    • Develop and share best practices for successful integration of economic development and product commercialization into the university mission.
    • Develop by June 2004 a written navigation process to alleviate the tech transfer bottleneck within the university and addresses the problem of entrepreneurial access to the university.
    • Develop a one-voice message on the importance and role of commercialization by universities and a communication plan for delivery of the message.

Further discussions will take place in the coming months between the Governor’s office, Michigan Economic Development Corporation, President’s Council, State Universities of Michigan, and representatives from the public and private sectors to implement these recommendations.

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