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Rice UniversityCBEN
Center for Biological and Environmental Nanotechnology

Entrepreneurship Education/Facilitation

An important element of our strategic plan is the realization that in the future many of the most important industrial collaborations for our center members will involve small startup companies. Not only are they becoming a major employer of technical PhDs, but these businesses are also becoming the route by which high-risk technologies are developed. These trends are due in some part to the bull market of the mid- to late 1990's; however, a principle that has withstood the test of time is that breakthrough technology is best developed by small groups of highly skilled, risk-taking individuals. These companies, which often involve the inventors as owners and partners, have very different concerns than larger corporations and require much more active involvement of inventors. Our entrepreneurship education programs are designed to prepare our students for these job opportunities and to forge strong relationships between the center and those corporations founded by our own members.

The entrepreneurial model for business development demands that inventors have access to the resources and talent of the business community. This requires that academics interact with business professionals, ideally in a forum to present their inventions. CBEN in collaboration with the Jones Graduate School of Management provides such opportunities.  The Rice Alliance for Technology and Entrepreneurship is the centerpiece of the University's bold initiative that joins the resources of the Wiess School of Natural SciencesBrown School of Engineering, and Jones Graduate School of Management together with other academic units and the Office of Technology Transfer. The mission of the Rice Alliance is to promote collaboration among university researchers and technology entrepreneurs, the outcome of which is the formation of new technology firms that bring to the marketplace innovative and useful products and services.

CBEN's activities in the area of Entrepreneurship include: