UChicago Physical Sciences Division Innovation Network Outreach Email Project
Leveraging PSD alumni commercialization know-how and connections to translate PSD faculty-directed research into application in existing or emerging markets.
The current thinking about innovation is based on the philosophy of "design thinking" or need-based innovation.
The research lab of Yossi Weizmann, assistant professor in the Department of Chemistry, applies nanoscience to design new generations of medical diagnostics and research platforms. Out of this groundbreaking work, Weizmann, along with postdoctoral scholars Zoya Cheglakov, PhD'15, and Jung-Hoon Lee, has taken the first steps in creating an exciting new business--PureIR BioTech.
To pursue business opportunities inspired by his long interest in nanoscale coordination polymer technology, Lin founded Coordination Pharmaceuticals Inc. (CPI) with the help of Everett Vokes, chair of the Department of Medicine.
The latest outreach newsletter highlights the growing impact of the Innovation Network and its ability to both assist faculty in the PSD and extend direct introductions and connections beyond the University. Chemistry professors David Mazziotti and Wenbin Lin, both of whom have launched exciting start-ups, are among those featured.
The sixth IN outreach newsletter focuses on the work of Yamuna Krishnan of the Department of Chemistry. She and her research group are inventing new tools to revolutionize the way we study cells by fashioning tiny, quantitative sensing devices that can be introduced externally into living systems.
The fifth edition of the IN outreach newsletter invites alumni and friends to respond with use-related ideas for Dr. Scott's open-source software (FEniCS), including customer identification, required interface specification, and/or testing initial simulation strategies.
The fourth edition of the IN outreach newsletter calls for alumni and friends to consider applications for Dr. Talapin's semiconductor solder in new markets such as printable electronics, 3D printing, flat-panel display manufacturing, solar cells, and thermoelectric heat-to-electricity generators.
With the third edition of the IN outreach newsletter, we invite our alumni and friends to propose new applications for Professor Heinrich Jaeger's jamming material.
This second installment of the PSD Innovation Network newsletter seeks additional material systems in commercial development from those working in the organic photovoltaic (OPV) industry in order to explore using Professor Yu's novel additive compound to enhance other systems' power conversion efficiencies.
The IN launched its eNewsletter outreach project with an introductory email introducing the Innovation Network and the new initiative to PSD alumni.
The first research-focused eNewsletter featured Professor Henry Frisch's work with photodetectors seeking leads on clean, used, ultra-high vacuum equipment.
The Innovation Network's Spring eNewsletter reached nearly 4,600 Physical Sciences Division alumni, further developing relationships with PSD graduates, revealing exciting leads for partnerships with peer institutions and developing projects, and fostering an improved understanding of how the Division can maintain open lines of communications with its alumni across the world. Our open rate was higher than expected, surpassing the industry standard by 10%. We also hope to learn from what people found most interesting and appealing about the first round of emails to direct future development of our communications.
In addition to a number of positive responses cheering on the project as a general concept and tool for facilitating collaboration between faculty and alumni, questions and leads were also presented in response to the first eNewsletter that continue to be explored on campus.
The feedback we received was as diverse as it was useful – including several leads on partnering opportunities, requests for more information on ways to become more closely engaged with the Innovation Network, and Henry Frisch's students writing to reconnect with their former professor. One of these leads initiated a conversation between Professor Frisch and researchers at the University of Wisconsin where a synchrotron lab was divesting itself of its equipment. Unfortunately, while the lab had the equipment that Professor Frisch had asked for, it had already been claimed.
The response from PSD alumni has been so overwhelmingly positive and useful that we are confidently moving forward with this effort, our suspicions confirmed that PSD alumni are eager to share their knowledge, connections, and ideas with faculty investigating commercialization opportunities. Thank you very much for your feedback and responses, and we look forward to working with you in the future. If you have any information on additional leads, please contact us firstname.lastname@example.org.