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Advancing Innovation and Entrepreneurship in Clean Energy

Board members provide strategic advice to three clean energy proof-of-concept centers.

The New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA) held the annual Advisory Board Meeting for its clean energy proof-of-concept centers (POCCs) on January 28 at the Academy.

Now in their third year of operation, the POCCs run programming to help inventors and scientists turn their high-tech, clean energy ideas into successful businesses by going through an immersive commercialization program that lasts for more than year. The POCCs are led by Columbia University and the New York University Polytechnic School of Engineering, which have collaborated to form PowerBridgeNY, and High Tech Rochester, which has formed NEXUS-NY. The ultimate goal is to create more New York State-based businesses in clean technology.

Advising the POCCs

The Academy, which serves in an advisory capacity for the POCCs, in concert with NYSERDA, formed the Advisory Board (members listed below) to provide strategic advice to the POCCs, on topics such as refining program processes, timelines, and outcome reporting. In addition to discussing successes, challenges, and future plans with representatives from the POCCs, at this year’s meeting, the Board heard from three POCC program participants about their companies, technologies, and experience in the program, as well as from two POCC mentors, who shared both successes and ideas for improvement.

Board members were selected for their expertise in innovative technologies, commercialization, and start-ups, as well as their experience working across sectors, including academia, industry, government, and non-profits.

The Advisory Board is comprised of:

  • Richard Adams, Manager of the Innovation and Entrepreneurship Center (IEC) at the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL)
  • David Audretsch, Distinguished Professor and SEPA Director of the SPEA Overseas Education Program, Ameritech Chair of Economic Development, and Director of the Institute for Development Strategies, Indiana University
  • Abigail Barrow, Founding Director, Massachusetts Technology Transfer Center
  • Bill Bonvillian, Director, MIT Washington Office, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
  • Michael Cassidy, President and CEO, Georgia Research Alliance
  • Jerome Engel, Founding Executive Director Emeritus, Lester Center for Entrepreneurship, University of California Berkeley
  • Ed Greer, Manager, Scouting and Exploration Network, Ventures and Business Development Group, The Dow Chemical Company
  • Jerry McGuire, Former Associate Vice Chancellor for Economic Development, University of North Carolina at Greensboro
  • Glen Merfeld, Platform Leader, Energy Storage Technology, GE Global Research – New York
  • Philip Mott, Technical Fellow, BorgWarner Corporation
  • Leon Sandler, Executive Director, MIT Deshpande Center for Technological Innovation
  • Robert Strom, Director of Research and Policy, The Kauffman Foundation
  • Dawn Tew, Program Director, Collaborative Research Initiatives, Global University Program, IBM

To learn more about the POCC model, download the Academy’s podcast, Proof of Concept Centers: Energy Technology.


Academy Staff
This article was written by a member of the Academy staff.

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