On May 11, 2022, FedTech hosted its inaugural Deep Tech Innovation Sprint at the Ballston Exchange Conference Center in Arlington, Virginia. Participants from government agencies, national laboratories, universities and corporations attended talks about the rapidly growing deep tech field with a focus on the culture and processes surrounding it, including research and development, technology transfer, commercialization, industry engagement, and diversity.
Attendees began the day with a welcome reception and heard from Ben Solomon, Managing Partner and FedTech Founder. Following his opening remarks, Betsy Bluestone, Commercial Discovery Leader, P&G Ventures, delivered the keynote address linking P&G’s success in innovation to consumer obsession, product fit, “more shots on goal” portfolio expansion and a “breakthrough or shut it down” approach with similarities to fail fast experimentation.
After the keynote, sprint participants attended one of three breakout sessions focusing on different aspects of deep tech innovation.
In the Tech Transfer, R&D, and Commercialization track, participants discussed strategies for scaling technology transfer and transitions. This included how to lower the barrier to commercializing new technologies from companies and labs around the country. They then rated the ideas on scales of feasibility and impact for their respective organizations. The conversation concluded with three key takeaways: the need for connection platforms, workplace development, and improved incentives.
The Industry Engagement and Open Innovation track investigated how large organizations can better collaborate with startups, small businesses, and academic institutions to facilitate commercialization. Here, they posited that demystifying the path, process, and timeline for small businesses to work with large government entities was a crucial step in collaboration. They added that creating entrepreneurial opportunities within the government was another key component in helping researchers pursue entrepreneurship.
The third track, Diversity, Equity, Inclusion & Accessibility (DEI&A), identified areas of deep tech where systemic barriers were limiting entrepreneurial diversity and access to programmatic support. Together, they looked at how organizations can encourage diversity among their staff and applicant pools. Furthermore, they looked at why diversity was a critical part of their engagement strategy as an organization in a quantifiable way.
The Deep Tech Innovation sprint concluded with closing remarks from Jake Kramer, FedTech Managing Partner, and opportunities for networking across government, industry and academic institutions.
FedTech would like to thank all attendees for their participation in the first-ever Deep Tech Innovation Sprint. Your collaboration and exploration resulted in new ideas for tech transfer, industry engagement, and DEI&A. We look forward to seeing you all again next year!
Interested in learning more about the Deep Tech Innovation Sprint and attending in 2023? Please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org .
Who is FedTech?
FedTech lives at the intersection of breakthrough technologies, entrepreneurship, and mission-driven organizations. Our commitment to unlock the benefits of technology for all is made possible via our deep relationships and collaborations that span across DoD, NASA, DoE, NIST, VA, federal labs, research institutions, universities, and corporations. We leverage our access to breakthrough technologies and entrepreneurs to keep our partners ahead of the disruption curve. Through our startup studios, accelerators, internal innovation and corporate venture programs, we work with individuals, companies, and government agencies to stay at the bleeding edge of innovation.