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Commerce Secretary Gary Locke Announces Plans for Forum on R&D Commercialization at Universities

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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

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Commerce Secretary Gary Locke Announces Plans for Forum on R&D Commercialization at Universities

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U.S. Commerce Secretary Gary Locke announced today his plans to host a forum with university leaders and key stakeholders on the roles of universities in innovation, economic development, job creation, and commercialization of federally funded research next month in Washington, D.C

The forum, to be held February 24, will open a dialogue among administration officials, university leaders, innovators, entrepreneurs, investors, and other stakeholders on the effectiveness of existing government and university policies, programs and practices that impact job creation and commercialization. Participants will discuss potential collaborative steps that the Commerce Department and administration can take working with universities and industry to increase and accelerate commercialization of federal R&D in universities.

“It’s not tenable for the United States to continue with the status quo,” Locke said at the Kauffman Foundation’s State of Entrepreneurship event. “In a world where innovation is critical to U.S. competitiveness, we must do everything in our power to optimize commercialization that stems from our nation’s vast research investments. The Commerce Department is working hard to find solutions, and as has always been the case, we will look to America's entrepreneurs to help chart the path back to recovery.”

Universities cultivate many of the critical capabilities needed to build an innovation economy, including the creation of new fundamental knowledge and technologies, the production of skilled industrial and research workforces, and entrepreneurship and leadership development. The federal government makes substantial investments in university-based R&D and has a long relationship with the university community. With input from many stakeholders, the Commerce Department will explore ways to increase and accelerate commercialization of new ideas from R&D that lead to new businesses and new jobs.

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