The University of Houston was delighted to host The Honorable Gordon R. England on January 9 to spark a dialogue on how universities can support an innovation economy in Texas. England is chairman of the National Academy of Engineering and presidient of The Academy of Medicine, Engineering and Science of Texas (TAMEST).
During his lecture, England emphasized the importance of translational research to establish innovation environments, even calling for research-intensive Ph.D. programs to consider a shift toward "industry-style problem solving" so that doctoral students can enter the industrial workforce.
With a considerable focus on opportunities in Texas, England called for the establishment of two national centers supporting educational and economic excellence, and for state leadership (civic, academic and industrial) to develop a vision for an innovation park.
By starting this dialogue among Texas universities, England says, it will begin a fundamental shift in the way universities function to support a much needed culture of innovation.