Research in Entrepreneurship and Commercialization Challenge (REACH)

A program of the IC² Institute for students of UT Austin
Summer 2017

The IC² Institute Research in Entrepreneurship and Commercialization Challenge (REACH) program will provide support for UT Austin students to

  • become familiar with topics and issues related to technology commercialization and
  • plan a research study related to institute programs or technology commercialization in general.

The program occurs during the UT Austin summer term.

Admission to the program is competitive. Both undergraduate and graduate students may be considered for the program.

Roles for students in the REACH program:

Research Fellows

Research Fellows will engage in training and research activities for a period of twelve weeks (Jun 5-Aug 27).

For the first ten weeks of the fellowship, Research Fellows will work in Austin with IC² Institute staff, learning institute methodologies, practicing skills related to commercialization and international business development, and exploring research opportunities for a specific region. The number of Research Fellows for the summer of 2017 is expected to be six—two specializing in Korean technology commercialization, two in Indian technology commercialization, and two in Polish technology commercialization.

The final two weeks of the fellowship (Aug 12-27) include a site visit to the region of specialization.

Research Fellows will be paid a salary for ten hours/week for ten weeks, and their international travel expenses will be covered. (UT Austin title: senior student associate; hourly rate: $10-$15/hour depending on academic year.)

Research Associates

Research Associates will engage in training and research activities for a period of eight weeks (Jun 5-Jul 28). Research Associates will work in Austin with IC² Institute staff, learning institute methodologies, practicing skills related to commercialization and international business development, and exploring research opportunities in a related field. The number of Research Associates for the summer of 2017 is expected to be twenty.

Research Associates will be paid a salary for ten hours/week for eight weeks. (UT Austin title: student associate; hourly rate: $10/hour.)

Research Associates who successfully complete summer activities will be considered for a Research Fellowship for the summer of 2018.

Auditors

With the permission of the IC² Institute director, students who are not selected for a Research Fellow or Research Associate position may audit REACH program activities. Auditors will be expected to make a commitment of at least 10 hours/week to program training during the month of June and at least 2 hours/week to program training during the month of July. Auditors are non-salaried.

(Note: Outside of the REACH program, students may also fill part-time jobs associated with institute programs. Each part-time job will have unique duties and qualifications as established by a particular supervisor. With supervisors’ permission, students in institute part-time jobs may audit REACH activities as appropriate.)

Additional REACH program opportunities

UT Austin students who successfully complete their commitments as either a Research Fellow, Research Associate, or Auditor, may apply for academic-year support or funding for further research activities. Support or funding may be awarded, when available and on a competitive basis, for research projects that are supervised by UT Austin faculty and are designed to lead to publication of significant findings.

REACH program training

Four types of training will be provided:

1. Review of key literature in technology commercialization and entrepreneurship as related to regional economic development.

Research Fellows, Research Associates, and Auditors will be required to read some key publications in the field and discuss these with REACH program staff. Students will also be provided with a list of additional sources. Research Fellows may be required to do additional reading and/or research of the literature.

2. Skills in creating research hypotheses and research proposals in the social sciences.

Research Fellows, Research Associates, and Auditors will be given basic information on the design of a research project and expectations for research proposal documents in the program.

3. Topics and terminology in technology commercialization.

Research Fellows, Research Associates, and Auditors will be provided an overview of current terminology and concepts related to technology transfer, technology business incubation, technology assessments, venture formation, and commercialization strategies.

4. Skills in assessing innovations, investigating market opportunities for innovations, and assisting innovators in international business development.

Research Fellows, Research Associates, and Auditors will learn and practice IC² Institute methodologies associated with technology descriptions, technology pitches, market research, assessments of commercialization strategies, discovery of business opportunities, and facilitation of business agreements. Research Fellows and Research Associates will be expected to spend a significant portion of their time practicing skills and completing assignments.

REACH program goals:

  1. Identify and prepare UT Austin student researchers who can contribute to the field of technology commercialization and economic development.
  2. Identify academic projects in technology commercialization and economic development that can engage both UT Austin students and UT Austin faculty.
    Identify UT Austin student researchers—in a wide variety of academic fields—who can benefit from the data or platforms provided by IC² Institute global or Austin laboratories.
  3. Make available to UT Austin students education and skills training related to technology commercialization theory and practice to supplement their UT Austin academic programs.
  4. Encourage interest in graduate study in technology commercialization and economic development.