Archive for the ‘Science’ Category

ITSEF Video: How Global Competition Has Changed and the Critical Role of Venture Capital in America’s Growth Economy

Global Competition and the Critical Role of Venture Capital in America’s Growth Economy

[RUN TIME 3 MINUTES 17 SECONDS]
Dr. Curtis Carlson, President and CEO of SRI International, speaking on the panel with Dr. Gururaj “Desh” Deshpande, Chairman Sparta Group, LLC and Lesa Mitchell, VP Advancing Innovation, Kauffman Foundation, at the IT Security Entrepreneurs’ Forum held at Stanford University on March 18, 2009.
Since 2007, ITSEF has focused on advancing innovation in security technologies through public-private partnerships by developing a community of interest between Washington and Silicon Valley. ITSEF is the only conference of its kind designed to “bridge the gap” between the Federal Government, system integrators, venture capitalists, and academic research communities. Dr. Carlson discusses the fragility of the U.S. venture capital ecosystem and how the U.S. Government needs to better understand the role of venture capital as the growth engine in the U.S. economy. Dr. Carlson also describes the declining competitive position of the U.S. in research and development today.
ITSEF is a part of the Security Innovation Network (SINet). For more information on SINet, click here.

ITSEF III Video: Curt Carlson, CEO of SRI International, on America’s Challenges Making the Transition to an Innovation Economy

Challenges Created by America’s Transition to an Innovation Economy

[run time 2 minutes 36 seconds]
Dr. Curtis Carlson, President and CEO of SRI International, speaking on a panel at the IT Security Entrepreneurs’ Forum (ITSEF) held at Stanford University on March 18, 2009. Since 2007, ITSEF has focused on advancing innovation in security technologies through public-private partnerships by developing a community of interest between Washington and Silicon Valley. ITSEF is the only conference of its kind designed to “bridge the gap” between the Federal Government, system integrators, venture capitalists, and academic research communities. Carlson explains how the US has transitioned to an Innovation Economy and discusses the broad socio-economic implications of accelerated rates of change in technology.
ITSEF is a part of the Security Innovation Network (SINet). For more information on SINet, click here.

ITSEF III Video: Unintended Consequences of U.S. Regulation– Serious Risks to Venture Capital and Innovation

Unintended Consequences of Regulation Put Fragile VC and Innovation Ecosystems at Grave Risk

[run time 46 seconds]
Dr. Curtis Carlson, President and CEO of SRI International, speaking on a panel with Dr. Gururaj “Desh” Deshpande, Chairman Sparta Group, LLC, and Lesa Mitchell, VP Advancing Innovation, Kauffman Foundation, at the third annual IT Security Entrepreneurs’ Forum (ITSEF) held at Stanford University on March 18, 2009. Since 2007, ITSEF has focused on advancing innovation in security technologies through public-private partnerships by developing a community of interest between Washington and Silicon Valley. ITSEF is the only conference of its kind designed to “bridge the gap” between the Federal Government, system integrators, venture capitalists, and academic research communities. Dr. Carlson addresses the challenges that exist today for the U.S. to build an innovation economy. He credits unintended consequences from financial regulation, in particular Sarbanes Oxley and current U.S. immigration policy for highly skilled foreign nationals, as killers of innovation in the U.S. today.
ITSEF is a part of the Security Innovation Network (SINet). For more information on SINet, click here.

ITSEF III Video: Desh Deshpande on the Role of Universities and Research Institutes as Centers of Excellence in Technology Innovation

The Increasing Role of Universities and Research Institutes as Centers of Excellence For Innovation Today

[run time 1 minute 27 seconds]
Dr. Gururaj “Desh” Deshpande, Chairman Sparta Group, LLC speaking on a panel the third annual IT Security Entrepreneurs’ Forum (ITSEF) held at Stanford University on March 18, 2009 with Lesa Mitchell, VP Advancing Innovation, Kauffman Foundation, and Dr. Curtis Carlson, President and CEO of SRI International. Pascal Levensohn, Founder and Managing Partner of Levensohn Venture Partners moderated the panel. Since 2007, ITSEF has focused on advancing innovation in security technologies through public-private partnerships by developing a community of interest between Washington and Silicon Valley. ITSEF is the only conference of its kind designed to “bridge the gap” between the Federal Government, system integrators, venture capitalists, and academic research communities. Deshpande explains how universities and research institutes like SRI International are at the center of gravity for innovation today.
ITSEF is a part of the Security Innovation Network (SINet). For more information on SINet, click here.

ITSEF III Video: The Immigration Debate and H-1B Visas– Lesa Mitchell of the Kauffman Foundation

The Immigration Debate: H-1B Visas and Highly Skilled Technology Entrepreneurs

[run time 35 seconds]
Lesa Mitchell, VP Advancing Innovation, Kauffman Foundation speaks on a panel with Dr. Gururaj “Desh” Deshpande, Chairman Sparta Group, LLC, Dr. Curtis Carlson, President and CEO of SRI International, and moderator Pascal Levensohn, Founder and Managing Partner of Levensohn Venture Partners. The panel is at the third annual IT Security Entrepreneurs’ Forum (ITSEF) held at Stanford University on March 18, 2009. Since 2007, ITSEF has focused on advancing innovation in security technologies through public-private partnerships by developing a community of interest between Washington and Silicon Valley. ITSEF is the only conference of its kind designed to “bridge the gap” between the Federal Government, system integrators, venture capitalists, and academic research communities. Ms. Mitchell discusses how the U.S. must re-evaluate its immigration policy.
ITSEF is a part of the Security Innovation Network (SINet). For more information on SINet, click here.

ITSEF III Video: Curt Carlson, CEO of SRI International, Calls for a National Innovation Czar

The Need For An Innovation Czar At The Federal Level

[run time 43 seconds]
Dr. Curtis Carlson, President and CEO of SRI International, speaking on a panel with Gururaj “Desh” Deshpande, Chairman Sparta Group, LLC and Lesa Mitchell, VP Advancing Innovation, Kauffman Foundation, at the third annual IT Security Entrepreneurs’ Forum (ITSEF) held at Stanford University on March 18, 2009. Since 2007, ITSEF has focused on advancing innovation in security technologies through public-private partnerships by developing a community of interest between Washington and Silicon Valley. ITSEF is the only conference of its kind designed to “bridge the gap” between the Federal Government, system integrators, venture capitalists, and academic research communities. Dr. Carlson urgently calls for an innovation czar at the Federal level.
ITSEF is a part of the Security Innovation Network (SINet). For more information on SINet, click here.

ITSEF III Video: Converging Forces– America’s Innovation Crisis, Cybersecurity, and National Security

Exposing the Links Between America’s Innovation Crisis, Cybersecurity, and National Security (ITSEF III full panel presentation)

This 51 minute video of the panel discussion on America’s Innovation Crisis is the first public release of live, unedited conference proceedings in the three-year history of the IT Security Entrepreneurs Forum (ITSEF). ITSEF III was held at Stanford University on March 18, 2009. Since 2007, ITSEF has focused on advancing innovation in security technologies through public-private partnerships by developing a community of interest between Washington and Silicon Valley. ITSEF is the only conference of its kind designed to “bridge the gap” between the Federal Government, system integrators, venture capitalists, and academic research communities. Pascal Levensohn, Founder and Managing Partner of Levensohn Venture Partners, moderates the panel, with panelists Dr. Curtis Carlson, President and CEO of SRI International, Dr. Gururaj “Desh” Deshpande, Chairman Sparta Group, LLC and Ms. Lesa Mitchell, VP Advancing Innovation, Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation.
ITSEF is a part of the Security Innovation Network (SINet). For more information on SINet, click here.

Aspen Institute Video: Judy Estrin Examines Some of the Root Causes of America’s Innovation Crisis

Examining the Root Causes of America’s Innovation Crisis

[4 minute run time]
Ms. Judy Estrin, author of “Closing the Innovation Gap”, former CTO of Cisco Systems, and a successful serial entrepreneur, took some time out of our seminar on Innovation on February 15, 2009 during the Aspen Institute Socrates Society Winter program in Aspen, Colorado to discuss some of the root causes of America’s Innovation crisis. This interview was conducted specifically in advance of the third annual IT Security Entrepreneurs’ Forum (ITSEF III) Innovation panel held at Stanford University on March 18, 2009 and was first released at the conference.
Since 2007, ITSEF has focused on advancing innovation in security technologies through public-private partnerships by developing a community of interest between Washington and Silicon Valley. ITSEF is the only conference of its kind designed to “bridge the gap” between the Federal Government, system integrators, venture capitalists, and academic research communities. Pascal Levensohn, Founder and Managing Partner of Levensohn Venture Partners, moderates the panel, with panelists Dr. Curtis Carlson, President and CEO of SRI International, Dr. Gururaj “Desh” Deshpande, Chairman Sparta Group, LLC and Ms. Lesa Mitchell, VP Advancing Innovation, Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation.
ITSEF is a part of the Security Innovation Network (SINet). For more information on SINet, click here.

More Signs of Trouble in the Innovation Ecosystem

Images Images-1Images-2 

The Q1 2009 venture capital investment statistics
are in, and they are down, BIG.
  While
nobody expected a strong showing given the environment, the magnitude of the across-the-board declines should give everyone pause.

(Note: Source for graphic at right, Judy Estrin, Closing the Innovation Gap)

In the speech that I gave at the DHS CATCH conference in Washington,D.C. on March 4th and on the panel that I
moderated at
Stanford on March 18th at ITSEF III, I pointed out that one developing impact of the global financial crisis that was not yet evident in the financial statistics would be accelerated declines in
new capital formation from venture-backed companies because capital normally dedicated to long-term risk has been severely drained from our equity markets—both public and private.

The following data comes from The MoneyTree(TM) Report by PricewaterhouseCoopers and the
National Venture Capital Association
based on data from Thomson Reuters:

"Quarterly investment activity was down 47 percent
in dollars and 37 percent in deals from the fourth quarter of 2008 when $5.7
billion was invested in 866 deals.
The quarter, which saw double digit declines in every
major industry sector, marks the lowest venture investment level since 1997.

Seed and Early stage investing fell 45 percent in terms of
dollars and 40 percent in terms of deals in the first quarter of 2009

with $852 million invested into 204 deals, compared to the fourth quarter when
venture capitalists invested $1.6 billion into 338 deals. Seed/Early stage
deals accounted for 37 percent of total deal volume in the first quarter, down
from 39 percent in the prior quarter.

First-Time
Financings

The dollar value of first-time deals (companies receiving
venture capital for the first time) declined by 48 percent to $596 million
going into 132 first rounds
, compared to the fourth quarter of 2008
when $1.1 billion went into 246 first-time deals.
First-time financings accounted for 20
percent of all dollars and 24 percent of all deals in the first quarter
compared to 20 percent of all dollars and 28 percent of all deals in the fourth
quarter of 2008.

The Clean Tech sector, which … comprises alternative energy,
pollution and recycling, power supplies and conservation, saw a substantial
drop in investment levels
with $154 million going into 33 deals in
the first quarter.
This represented an 84 percent decline in the dollar
level in the Clean Tech sector
from the fourth quarter of 2008 when
$971 million went into 67 deals. This quarter marks the lowest investment level
for the Clean Tech sector since 2005.

The Life Sciences sector (Biotechnology and Medical Devices combined)
experienced a 40 percent decline in terms of dollars and a 31 percent drop in
deals
with $989 million going
into 133 rounds."

New capital formation, particularly first time
financings, plants the seeds for the next generation of successful companies
that are going to be creating new jobs and a sustainable cycle of economic
growth.
  New Technology,
particularly Cleantech and Life Sciences investments, are critical focal points
for the Obama administration.

With California unemployment now over 11%, it is
hard to see a reversal in this trend developing in Q2.

Why We Need A National Cybersecurity Advisor

Cybersecurity1 On Thursday the San Jose Mercury News published an opinion article that I wrote "Private sector must be partners in national cybersecurity".  I wrote this article to bring attention to the upcoming Senate debate on the newly introduced bill calling for the establishment of an  Office of the National Cybersecurity Advisor.  For a copy of the draft bill,Download CybAdvisr1.  Introduced by Senators Rockefeller and Snowe, the bill creates a major opportunity for collaboration between the public and private sectors in an area that is critical to our nation's national and economic security.

An excerpt from the article: 

"Criminals attacking our nation in cyberspace do not discriminate between the government and private industry. The need for collaborative information sharing and unified threat protection shouldn't either. As the public debate develops on this Senate bill, there will be many who reject the notion of what the media is dubbing as a "cyberczar." Instead, thought leaders from both the public and private sectors should revisit the fundamental notion of how we should go about defining successful approaches to joint problem solving.

Equally important, a new protocol for confidential information sharing must be established as soon as possible, and this information could be disseminated through a round-table of top-level corporate Internet security experts, venture capitalists who are experts in new security technologies and methods, and government representatives from the Defense, Commerce and Homeland Security communities.

Because it is a matter of national and economic security, establishing an office for a national cybersecurity adviser who reports to the president will bring unanticipated benefits. America is already late to realize that we must embrace a new and integrated collaboration between the public and private sectors to truly promote innovation. To ignore this reality in cybersecurity will only make it more difficult for our country to effectively protect itself from attack. Let's not wait for a cyberattack equivalent to 9/11 to completely break our technology backbone before we are ready to fix it."

There is abundant
evidence that the U.S. Government is most comfortable being purely reactive to
crisis and suffers from a prioritization problem based on where the current
fires are burning—our leaders typically are not driven to anticipate the next set
of forest fires that are currently below the public radar.
  In cybersecurity, the government’s
historic approach to public-private partnerships has been that the private
sector informs the government what they are experiencing, and the government shares
little outside of mandating broad certification frameworks for government
business in return.
  This
historical information asymmetry must be eliminated—it is totally
counterproductive and prevents huge benefits from information sharing and
establishing best practices.