Part I Friday, September 25, 12 pm Eastern (90 min) How COVID-19 Is Affecting The Deep Tech Startup Ecosystem
Overview – COVID-19 has been the most profound shock to the national research enterprise since World War II. The repercussions are still shaking out, but lost research output due to temporary closures of most state economies has wreaked havoc on the pace of innovation and commercialization in the U.S. It is expected that the financial and economic affects of the pandemic on capital markets will be a catastrophic event for many early-stage companies, especially those that are bringing deep technologies to market. The first part of the Deep Dive Into Deep Tech Incubation webinar series featured thought leaders from government, academia, startups, and the investment community discussed how deep tech entrepreneurs can try to weather COVID-19 and make it out on the other side of this crisis stronger and better prepared.
Part II Friday, October 16, 12 pm Eastern (60 min) Deep Tech Incubation Fundamentals and Best Practices
Overview – Deep tech innovators and entrepreneurs often need increasing levels of support due to the capital intensity and long lead times required to commercialize their innovations. Incubators and accelerators play a critical role in helping fill gaps and connect dots for aspiring deep tech startups, providing everything from mentorship to access to talent and matchmaking with various capital sources. This support is essential to an early-stage company’s success, especially given the plethora of well-intentioned programs that can often confuse or misguide aspiring entrepreneurs and innovators who are almost always working with limited resources. The second part of the Deep Dive Into Deep Tech Incubation webinar series featured leading experts from the nation’s top deep tech incubators and accelerators who shared tips, lessons learned, and best practices for deep tech startups and venture development organizations.
Part III Wednesday, November 18, 12 pm Eastern (60 min) Deep Tech Incubation and Academia Nexus
Overview – Deep tech innovation is often born out of academic research at campuses across the nation. As a result, colleges and universities play a unique and critical role in fostering the development and commercialization of technologies that will transform our lives. The technology discovery and transfer processes can be especially risky for deep tech innovations given the complexity of scaling them from lab to market and understanding potential commercial applications. However, colleges and universities remain at the forefront of deep tech incubation. Their people and programs that support this research translation process directly impact the strength and competitiveness of technology innovation in the U.S. The third part of the Deep Dive Into Deep Tech Incubation webinar series featured visionaries from leading academic institutions that discussed this research translation nexus and how they have managed the deep tech commercialization process and instill strong entrepreneurial cultures at their respective campuses.
Part IV Friday, December 18, 12 pm Eastern (90 min) Deep Tech Venture Capital and Corporate Partnerships
Overview – Deep tech startups typically require significant capital and time to get their innovations into the market. More and more financial investors have entered this space as they view the outsize financial returns that are possible worth the risk of supporting deep tech startups. In addition, more corporate and strategic partners are competing by investing in innovation, whether it is structured as direct investments in early-stage companies or other forms of support like joint ventures or non-recurring engineering. These venture capital and corporate partnerships provide highly valuable validation for deep tech startups, which enables them to raise follow-on capital and secure the partnerships that are critical to commercialize their technology. The fourth part of the Deep Dive Into Deep Tech Incubation webinar series featured top investors and corporates who are actively partnering with deep tech startups as well as entrepreneurs who have benefited from this type of support.
Part V Friday, April 30, 12 pm Eastern (60 min) Diversity and Inclusion In Deep Tech
Overview – Deep tech commercialization requires significant human and capital resources. Whether it’s within a startup, a large corporation or anything in between, this deep tech to market process requires a strong and committed team of people with different expertise and experience. In addition, it has been well documented that tech ecosystems often lack diversity and participation from a truly inclusive mix of people from a wide range of backgrounds. There is also empirical data that shows more diverse teams are more productive and more profitable for their organizations. As a result, it seems that there is an opportunity for all members of the deep tech ecosystem to identify ways to improve and emphasize diversity and inclusion in their various roles. Doing so would likely enable them to better serve deep tech entrepreneurs and startups and position them for success. The fifth and final part of the Deep Dive Into Deep Tech Incubation webinar series explored the diversity and inclusion gap in deep tech innovation and discussed approaches that organizations are using across the country to instill diverse and inclusive ecosystems where they operate.