Innovate Indiana, IUPUI to host economic-development tour as part of APLU annual meeting

  • Nov. 12, 2015


INDIANAPOLIS -- A select group of university officials attending the Association of Public and Land-grant Universities' 128th annual meeting in Indianapolis will learn firsthand how Indiana universities encourage innovation, entrepreneurship and economic development through community partnerships.

More than 1,250 university representatives from across the nation will gather at the JW Marriott hotel for the three-day event, which starts Sunday. Indiana University President Michael A. McRobbie will deliver welcoming remarks; the keynote speaker is University of California President and former U.S. Secretary of Homeland Security Janet Napolitano. She will discuss how public universities "deliver the future" in education, research and community engagement.

On Monday, award-winning actor, writer and director Alan Alda, best known for his work on the TV series "M*A*S*H," will deliver APLU's Council of Presidents luncheon address. A longtime champion of clearly communicating the value, findings and implications of scientific research, Alda helped found the Alan Alda Center for Communicating Science at Stony Brook University in 2009.

Monday afternoon, 150 APLU officials will board buses for a three-hour tour of Indianapolis and Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis. Participants serve on one of three APLU subgroups: its Commission on Innovation, Competitiveness and Economic Prosperity; its Council on Engagement and Outreach, or its Coalition of Urban Serving Universities.

Sponsored by Innovate Indiana and IUPUI, the tour will present firsthand examples of how Indiana universities and key partners collaborate to:

  • Enhance quality of life through proactive community partnerships that provide societal and economic benefits;
  • Advance technology-based economic development through commercialization;
  • Promote development of the innovation and entrepreneurial ecosystem in Indianapolis, in Central Indiana, and statewide.

"Collectively, the tour and panel discussions we have assembled represent an outstanding opportunity for Indiana University and IUPUI, as well as for our featured stakeholder partners," said David Gard, IU's assistant vice president for economic development. "They will showcase our leading collaborative resources, practices and expertise in community and economic engagement to our visiting colleagues from universities around the country.”

The tour's initial stop will be the John H. Boner Community Center on the city's near-east side. In a discussion moderated by IUPUI Vice Chancellor for Community Engagement Amy Conrad Warner, local, city and university leaders will address how faculty, staff and students have worked over the past decade to spur urban renewal in the area.

The next stop will be IUPUI's Campus Center Theater, where university officials will highlight collaborative projects that are focused on innovation, entrepreneurship and technology commercialization. IUPUI Chancellor Nasser H. Paydar and IU Vice President for Capital Planning and Facilities Tom Morrison will offer opening remarks, followed by two panel discussions.

One panel will address how the collaborative dynamics of the Indiana Biosciences Research Institute and 16 Tech Innovation Districts are positioned to transform and advance Indiana's life sciences industry. David Johnson, president and CEO of the Central Indiana Corporate Partnership and BioCrossroads, will serve as moderator, with IU Vice President for Engagement Bill Stephan serving as a panelist.

The other panel will focus on how Indiana universities promote entrepreneurship through university-led technology commercialization and collaborative efforts. Its moderator will be Tony Armstrong, president and CEO of the Indiana University Research and Technology Corp. Panelists will include IURTC Spin Up program director Joe Trebley and Todd Saxton, an associate professor at IU's Kelley School of Business and board president of the Venture Club of Indiana.

The tour will conclude with an evening reception at the Indianapolis Artsgarden.

Other IU officials taking part in key sessions at APLU's annual meeting include Vice President for Research Fred H. Cate. He will serve as a panelist in a Monday discussion on "Identifying and Solving Research Grand Challenges."

During the opening session, APLU also will recognize the 125th anniversary of the Morrill Act of 1890, which helped create many of today's historically black colleges and universities.

About Innovate Indiana: Indiana University is designated as an Innovation and Economic Prosperity University by the Association of Public and Land-grant Universities. This recognizes IU's commitment across all its campuses to being a leading institution in fostering regional economic development. Led by IU's Office of the Vice President for Engagement, the Innovate Indiana initiative engages strategic partners to leverage and advance the university's intellectual resources and expertise, enhance Indiana's economic growth, and contribute to the overall quality of life for Hoosiers.

About APLU: Founded in 1887, APLU is North America's oldest higher-education association, with 237 member institutions in all 50 U.S. states, the District of Columbia, four U.S. territories, Canada and Mexico. Its annual meeting is one of the premier events for public-university leaders to exchange ideas about the latest challenges and opportunities that face such institutions, as well as develop new ideas and initiatives to meet them.

About IURTC: IURTC is a not-for-profit organization that supports Indiana University faculty and researchers in realizing the commercial potential of their discoveries. Since 1997, IURTC's university clients have accounted for more than 2,800 inventions, nearly 1,900 patent applications and more than 80 startup companies.

Media Contacts

Bill W. Hornaday

Innovate Indiana