Innovation is a key theme woven throughout UBC’s new strategic plan. Along with collaboration and inclusion, it’s one of three cross-cutting priorities that will enhance our institutional impact in an increasingly complex and interconnected world.
Truth is, innovation isn’t a new concept at UBC; we’ve been innovating for more than a century. One key form of innovation at UBC is the process by which our research discoveries and bold thinking create positive social and economic impacts. UBC research has benefitted the world in so many ways, from ensuring sustainable use of coastal marine ecosystems to developing the gold standard in image recognition software; from devising composite materials used in commercial aircraft to treating HIV/AIDS.
We have a solid track record when it comes to advancing key industry sectors in British Columbia and Canada. We generate significant social and economic impacts through our research activities, and we have an enviable record when it comes to commercialization—more than 200 spin-off companies, 450 current licensing agreements, and $11.5 billion in sales of products using UBC discoveries.
But what is new is the way UBC is expanding and formalizing its commitment to this form of innovation by extending and improving the pathways that transform research, partnerships and entrepreneurial activities into impactful products, practices, treatments and policies. It’s got a new name too: Innovation UBC.
I invite you to learn more about Innovation UBC at https://innovation.ubc.ca. There, you’ll read about our new innovation hubs in downtown Vancouver and Kelowna, designed to provide a welcoming “front door” for partners to engage with UBC, as well as space and facilities to support our new ventures. Please join us at upcoming events to formally launch these spaces — you’ll find all the details at https://innovation.ubc.ca/hubs-launch.
You’ll also find information about UBC’s participation in the 3rd #BCTECH summit on May 14-16 at the Vancouver Convention Centre. This popular event brings together university, industry and government partners working in the tech space. This year UBC will have an even larger presence that includes Innovation UBC and highlights our new ventures, our contributions of talent to the tech economy, and 18 research projects that could underpin the next generation of tech innovations in BC. Follow UBC at the #BCTECH Summit at https://innovation.ubc.ca/bctech-summit.