The university system is critical to the Innovation Economy in Boston. Not only do schools supply the region with well-trained creative class workers in fields like engineering, science, design, and architecture; they also serve as R&D labs, generating new technology research; and as catalysts for the marketplace of ideas that fuels entrepreneurialism and a growing ecosystem of start-up companies. In addition, universities provide a place for that all important cross-pollination of ideas across industries and practices, which drives ongoing and sometimes unexpected innovation.
Nowhere is this more apparent than at events like "Tech, Drugs and Rock n' Roll" presented by Boston University's Office of Technology Development last week — a great example of the power of the university as catalyst. The TDRR event brought together academic scientists, industry representatives, investors, service providers, and students in a relaxed setting that showcased impressive technologies from the Fraunhofer Institute, and BU's Life Sciences, Physical Sciences, Engineering, and Photonics departments.