University research facilities have long been recognized as valuable resources of technology, technical expertise and innovation. The Innovate Arkansas team realizes that all university research facilities can contribute significantly to helping Arkansas’ economic standing.
Nationwide, university settings have long been one of the major contributors to new technology, startup companies and budding entrepreneurship. Arkansas is no exception; however, Arkansas university research ranks 48th (per capita) in the nation.
Each of the state’s primary university research facilities (the University of Arkansas, University of Arkansas at Little Rock, University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences and Arkansas State University) has developed product licensing processes to work with their respective teaching and research staffs. Academic research is important to Arkansas’ economy, not only because it can generate startup companies and intellectual property, but also because it can attract established, knowledge-based firms to the state.
Innovate Arkansas can provide the resources Arkansas universities need to turn intellectual property into a viable commercial enterprise. Innovate Arkansas strives to foster relationships with universities and has worked closely with the following programs:
The mission of the University of Arkansas Technology Development Foundation is to stimulate a knowledge-based economy in Arkansas through partnerships that lead to new opportunities for learning and discovery, build and retain a knowledge-based workforce, and spawn the development of new technologies that enrich the economic base of Arkansas.
The foundation is a 501(c)(3) organization formed to grow and manage the Arkansas Research and Technology Park. In cooperation with public and private business development entities, the foundation will bolster university efforts to catalyze a technology-based economy in Arkansas. Specifically, the foundation will validate, develop and transfer inventions made at the university to Arkansas companies and start-up ventures.
The Nanotechnology Center at the University of Arkansas at Little Rock is a state-of-the-art, user-oriented facility focused on education, research and economic development. Our mission is to advance the science of nanotechnology through research and outreach and to accelerate technological innovations into practical applications for Arkansas and society.
The center has established the following goals:
• Providing access to state-of-the art instruments, equipment and facilities to academia and industry around the state of Arkansas and beyond
• Creating an outreach network to attract Arkansas middle and high school, undergraduate and graduate students to nanotechnology, science and technology-related careers
• Focusing on commercialization of applied technologies and creation of start-up companies to benefit the state's economic development
BioVentures works to bring the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences’ research discoveries, innovations and breakthroughs from the laboratory to the marketplace by providing business development expertise, laboratories and funding opportunities to its university-based startup companies.
Formed in 1997, BioVentures helps researchers sort through the complex questions that follow a discovery. Under BioVentures’ management, nearly 500 novel ideas from UAMS researchers have been evaluated and developed. These have resulted in license agreements from more than 150 patents and an equal number of pending patents.
With the leadership of an advisory board that includes top business leaders, university executive administration and entrepreneurs, UAMS BioVentures is uniquely positioned to transform ground-breaking discoveries that not only save lives, but boost Arkansas’ economy, too.
The Arkansas Biosciences Institute encompasses the collaborative research efforts of five institutions through agricultural and medical research to improve the health of Arkansans.
The ABI was created as the major research component of the Tobacco Settlement Proceeds Act of 2000. Scientists from the five member campuses – Arkansas Children's Hospital; Arkansas State University; the University of Arkansas-Division of Agriculture; the University of Arkansas, Fayetteville; and the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences – focus on agriculture and basic and clinical science research that will lead to health improvement, especially in the area of tobacco-related diseases.
This joint venture in science research will strengthen all participating ABI partners by enhancing collaborations in the common research areas of agriculture, bioengineering, tobacco-related illnesses, nutrition and related science and other complementary fields.
The mission of the ABI is to improve the health of Arkansans through new and expanded agricultural and medical research initiatives. ABI will become internationally recognized as a leader in health and life sciences research. Its multifaceted programs will strengthen Arkansas through science-based economic development including research, education and technology. By working on joint and related research initiatives, the five member organizations created a large community of scientists and researchers who can better compete for external grant awards from federal sources and national foundations, increase the number of scientists and staff supported by extramural funding, share resources (equipment and expertise), attract other scientists to Arkansas and encourage science-based economic development in the state.UALR College of Engineering & Information Technology
The University of Arkansas at Little Rock's College of Engineering & Information Technology is fast becoming one of the finest teaching and research facilities for advanced engineering, integrated technology and computer-based applications.
A first-rate faculty from some of the nation’s most prestigious universities offers advanced research laboratories for the development of innovative solutions leading to rapid commercialization. These labs include one of the nation’s most unique research environments: a virtual reality center for life-sized, three-dimensional modeling and data visualization. EIT also features labs for such fields as micro circuit design, power engineering, materials testing, wireless antenna development and wind tunnel testing.
EIT’s founding dean, Dr. Mary L. Good, is the former U.S. Undersecretary of Commerce for Technology. Her internationally-recognized prestige and real-world background set the fast pace for EIT’s faculty, staff and students as they work to fulfill a shared mission of economic development for Arkansas.
Innovate Arkansas client Movista was born in the MBA program at the University of Arkansas Walton Business College, but when it came time to put down permanent roots, co-founders April Seggebruch and Stan Zylowski chose a house just off the square in downtown Bentonville.
While he supports enterprises and technologies that embrace sustainability and renewable energy as president and CEO of BlueInGreen LLC, Clete Brewer is first and foremost about the business side.
Arkansas Business is proud to have featured a number of 40 Under 40 honorees who have gone on to the corner offices of publicly traded companies. Let's count them.
Jeff Stalnaker moved from high-tech data services firm Acxiom to lead a high-tech startup, First Orion, which with its PrivacyStar smartphone application seeks to give people their privacy back.