Wharton School Launches New Innovation Fund

The University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School has announced the creation of a new fund to promote the design of creative technologies or services that can make a substantial impact on business and society.

The Wharton Innovation Fund, described by fund founder Alberto Vitale as “a catalyst to stimulate innovation at the School and to surface the brainpower of its students,” provides resources for students, faculty and staff to take projects that may begin in the classroom into the world at large.

While the Fund gives preference to student-led projects, proposals that may involve faculty, students and staff will be considered as well, particularly those that leverage the School’s inventions and thought leadership in various fields of business.

Approximately $125,000 in grants is available each year.  Inventions or ventures that emerge from student-led projects remain the intellectual property of the student-inventors.  In instances of inventions or ventures that leverage the University’s intellectual property, any economic value will be shared among the inventors, the School and the University.

“Innovation is one of the pillars of the Wharton School. The Wharton Innovation Fund reflects the School’s dedication to nurturing the best ideas and providing them a structure in which to grow,” says Wharton Dean Thomas S. Robertson.

“I am delighted that Alberto Vitale is supporting the School through the Wharton Innovation Fund,” says professor Karl Ulrich, who heads the Innovation initiative and is also Wharton’s Vice Dean of Innovation. “This fund will enable our work to have an even greater impact in so many arenas.”

The application process for the Wharton Innovation Fund and criteria for selection are described on the website http://beacon.wharton.upenn.edu/innovation.

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