Taking Innovation from the Laboratory to the Marketplace

Check out the top lessons learned by our Node (so far)

The Upstate New York (UNY) I-Corps Node provides inclusive entrepreneurial training to members of the scientific community (students, postdocs, faculty, and other researchers) to reduce the risk of pursing commercialization without insights into industry needs and challenges, and to accelerate the translation of research discoveries to products and services that benefit society. Since 2017, the UNY Node has led 110+ regional I-Corps courses at 20 universities and helped 86 teams successfully apply to the NSF I-Corps Teams program. The UNY Node has also developed and shared a widely-lauded instructor training that focuses on inclusive and equitable teaching practices.

UNY I-Corps Regional Economic Impact Since 2017*

$63.4M
capital raised

$11.6M
SBIR/STTR funding

$25M
business revenue

124
new hires by startups

*Data includes teams who have completed national I-Corps Teams, a UNY I-Corps regional course, or were affiliated with Cornell’s I-Corps Site.

How to Get Involved

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Take an I-Corps Course

Inventors can learn about market opportunities through I-Corps Regional Courses.

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Become a Mentor

Mentors can support teams on the cutting edge of innovation.

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Learn About Inclusive Instruction

Instructors can make their teaching more inclusive through our diversity, equity, and inclusion initiatives.

NSF National Innovation Network

Teams

I-Corps Teams is the flagship program of  the NSF I-Corps initiative, offered 3 to 4 times per quarter. Top researchers from across the US apply to this intensive seven-week entrepreneurship course with mentoring and a $50,000 grant. Teams conduct 100+ customer discovery interviews to determine is there is sizeable product-market fit.

Sites

I-Corps Sites at individual academic institutions provide infrastructure, advice, resources, networking opportunities, training and modest funding to help researchers explore commercialization opportunities and prepare to become I-Corps Team applicants. Node partners Cornell, Rochester, and RIT each have I-Corps Sites.

Nodes

I-Corps Nodes are designed to support regional needs for innovation education, infrastructure and research. The nine national Nodes work cooperatively to build, utilize and sustain a national innovation ecosystem that further enhances the development of technologies, products and processes that benefit society.

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Hubs

I-Corps Hubs are the new operational backbone of the National Innovation Network, a network of universities, NSF-funded researchers, established entrepreneurs, local and regional entrepreneurial communities, and other federal agencies. Learn more about I-Corps Hubs.

National Science Foundation (NSF)

NSF started I-Corps in 2011 to empower researchers and aspiring startups to combine their technical and scientific knowledge with an entrepreneurial mindset to develop new technologies that meet a market need and benefit society.

NSF granted Cornell, along with partners Rochester and RIT, an award establishing the UNY I-Corps Node to deliver I-Corps training to participants across the Northeast.

National Science Foundation Innovation Corps Logo