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innovation DAILY

Here we highlight selected innovation related articles from around the world on a daily basis.  These articles related to innovation and funding for innovative companies, and best practices for innovation based economic development.

GAO Report on Bayh-Dole: Leverage to Promote Commercialization of Federally-Funded Inventions

The General Accountability Office submitted its report to Congress today on the administration of the regulations found under the Bayh-Dole Act, the foundation of all federally-funded research in the United States and one of the key factors in the creation (and boom) of biotechnology as both a research field and industry in the 1980s.

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what it takes to become a center of innovation by Eric Drexler

Asia has strengths that promise to make it a leading center of technological innovation in the 21st century. These strengths are substantial, fundamental, and durable. At their base lie aspects of culture, on both a civilizational and generational time scale. Human capital and the capacity for mobilization build on these cultural advantages.

The term “Asia” is of course a label for a collection of very different societies. I will speak primarily of China, counting Taiwan and Singapore as strongly linked parts of what is almost a whole. South Korea shares similar strengths; Japan and India differ more substantially.

Angel captital groups adjusting strategy to the economy

LENEXA, KS - The economic recession is having an impact on angel group investment strategies, which are investing more in portfolio companies and have less appetite for new deals, according to a survey by the Angel Capital Association.

The survey says Angel groups’ 2009 strategies include increased investment in portfolio companies, preferences for co-investing, less appetite for new deals, fewer anticipated exits, and a predicted increase in both quantity and quality of deal flow.

Replace the World Bank with Venture Capital? by Carl Hammerdorfer

"Is it just me, or is the world actually discussing global poverty and development solutions with renewed passion and genuine rethinking? Work in the development racket for too long can make even the most starry-eyed optimist feel a bit jaded. After all, how long can you hang your hat on the success of South Korea and Poland? Sure, Ghana and Botswana are starting to seem like good stories, but what about Egypt, Burkina Faso, Honduras, Bolivia and a hundred other countries spinning their wheels in poverty’s swamp? When do we start seeing some real, long-term results? When do perennially poor states stand on their own feet?

Chu announces grant for energy innovation by Bruce Henderson

Energy Secretary Steven Chu announced a $49 million federal grant Wednesday to a Charlotte battery-component maker, a step toward what he called a new era of energy innovation.

The grant will help Charlotte-based Celgard LLC create some 200 jobs over the next three years, the company said. Celgard makes porous membranes for rechargeable lithium-ion batteries in southern Mecklenburg County.

Thompson Bill Passes House "The Educating Entrepreneurs through Today's Technology Act"

July 28, 2009 6:12 PM
Washington, D.C.-Today the House of Representatives passed by voice vote, House Resolution 1807, the Educating Entrepreneurs through Today's Technology Act, introduced by U.S. Representative Glenn `GT' Thompson, R-Howard.

"Small businesses are the backbone of our economy, employing roughly half of U.S. workers, and while our communities are experiencing high unemployment rates, the entrepreneurial spirit remains alive and well," Thompson told the Members.  "For many underserved and rural areas, it is critical to have the opportunity and ability to tap into resources that will foster further economic development and provide prospective entrepreneurs with the same access afforded to their suburban and urban counterparts."
The measure will provide high-quality tele-distance training through a competitive grants process administered by the Small Business Administration. The program will promote peer-to-peer networking for small business development, by using technology to deliver information and share data on-line and through videos and satellite communication.

Satellite seminars and online information services will allow prospective and established business men and women to interact with each other to trouble shoot problems and share best practices for interacting with the Small business Administration.  This is a good example of the proliferation of online networking sites, where people can exchange their knowledge and  information.  This one will offer facts and figures on securing financing, navigating government regulations and learning to get a small business off the ground.

For many entrepreneurs, accessing this kind of information requires driving long distances to a Small Business Development Center.  This legislation will bring the information to home computers.

In April, when this bill had a hearing before the Small Business Committee, Donna Kilhoffer, the program manager for the Community Education Council of Elk and Cameron Counties testified, "The entrepreneurial spirit is alive and well in our area. What is lacking is the opportunity and ability to tap into 'the experts'."

This measure will allow people throughout the Nation to tap into the experts.

Thompson's bill passed in May as well when it was included as a part of a larger House-passed bill, (H.R. 2352), the Job Creation through Entrepreneurship Act of 2009.  Both measures await action in the U.S. Senate before either can become law.


Kathryn Holmes
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UK State-led venture capital lags behind rivals

State-backed venture capital funds have underperformed their purely commercial rivals in recent years, according to new research.

Commercial VC funds started in 2002-04 achieved weighted annual average returns of 7.7 per cent, compared with 1.7 per cent for all VC funds, including those backed by the state, according to the British Venture Capital and Private Equity Association.

Ernst & Young: Cleantech Investment Skyrockets In Q2

U.S. venture capital investment in cleantech companies in Q2 2009 reached $572 million, an increase of 73% in terms of capital, with 48 financing rounds, a 100% increase in number of transactions compared to Q1 2009, according to an Ernst & Young analysis based on data from Dow Jones VentureSource.

Compared to Q2 08, the second-highest quarter for cleantech investment on record, the Q2 09 results were 59% and 16% below those record levels in terms of capital and number of transactions, respectively.

Obama: Innovation 'more important than ever'

President Obama told the residents of northern Indiana today that his budget will help tap "the creative and innovative spirit" of areas that have been hard hit by recession and globalization.

"Innovation is more important than ever," Obama told a friendly crowd in Wakarusa, Ind., announcing $2.4 billion in new grants for the development of electric cars.

The Nation’s C.T.O. Woos Silicon Valley by Ashlee Vance

Aneesh Chopra, the nation’s first chief technology officer, wants to make a very dear friend of Silicon Valley.

Mr. Chopra took his initial step on that quest on Tuesday night, when he addressed Silicon Valleyites during a stump speech hosted by the Churchill Club at the Computer History Museum in Mountain View, Calif. He delivered the expected lines about the government trying to work better with industry and used phrases like “blogs and wikis,” “collaboration” and “visualizations” to get across the point that the Obama administration has mastered Valley buzzwords.