SOURCE: Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation

Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation

June 16, 2010 13:00 ET

Clean Energy Leaders Discuss Innovation at First Regional Summit as Offshoot of White House Conference

Kauffman Foundation Releases Report on White House Energy Conference That Offers Recommendations to Achieve Energy Innovation Goals

OMAHA, NE--(Marketwire - June 16, 2010) -  National energy industry innovators and leaders met in Omaha, Neb., today for the national kick-off of three regional meetings to discuss collaboration in clean energy innovation. At the meeting, the Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation released a report summarizing the discussion and recommendations made at the Energy Innovation Conference held at the White House last month. The Kauffman Foundation convened the Omaha event with the City of Omaha, Gallup and HDR.

"Clean energy has untapped potential to drive the economy and create jobs in America," said Kauffman Foundation President and CEO, Carl Schramm. "It is a lagging industry because of intense regulations, which often hampers innovation. These meetings will help us build a national network of energy innovators who can connect the disparate players in the industry and catalyze high-growth energy business formation and growth."

Scientists, entrepreneurs, innovators, venture capitalists, military and government experts, and others discussed policy and processes that can enhance all stages of the energy innovation pipeline. By the end of the summit, the group made specific recommendations to help grow energy innovation regionally, and inform a national energy innovation network.

To help facilitate connections among energy innovators, the Kauffman Foundation has created the Energy Innovation Network to help entrepreneurs connect with researchers to develop new technologies, assist startups in finding customers and connect public and private entities, share policy and other information. Interested individuals can find out more at http://www.energyinnovationnetwork.org.

"We find a number of policy barriers make deployment of a new technology difficult," said Lesa Mitchell, Kauffman Foundation vice president of Advancing Innovation. "Often, the technology will have been developed and can get stuck getting to market. One of the key challenges is to smooth the path to bring that technology to market. It will have a significant impact on the energy industry."

Following the regional meeting in Omaha, the Kauffman Foundation is co-hosting subsequent meetings in Portland, Ore., and Phoenix, Ariz.

Selected quotes from other summit participants:
"Omaha is proud to play a role in continuing the discussion about enhanced energy innovation," said Omaha Mayor, Jim Suttle. "The stakeholders attending the Energy Innovation Conference bring a wide range of experience and ideas to the discussion about fostering entrepreneurship in the developing green economy. I look forward to putting the ideas and practices to use in our community, where possible, and facilitating future regional and national discussions about energy innovation."

"Renewable energy will play a central role in both our economy and our quality of life in the coming decades," said Elwin Larson, executive vice president and director of Federal, Energy and Resource Management at HDR. "These regional meetings are a great way to promote innovation, and HDR is happy to be a part of this important discussion."

About the Kauffman Foundation
The Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation is a private, nonpartisan foundation that works to harness the power of entrepreneurship and innovation to grow economies and improve human welfare. Through its research and other initiatives, the Kauffman Foundation aims to open young people's eyes to the possibility of entrepreneurship, promote entrepreneurship education, raise awareness of entrepreneurship-friendly policies and find alternative pathways for the commercialization of new knowledge and technologies. It also works to prepare students to be innovators, entrepreneurs and skilled workers in the 21st century economy through initiatives designed to improve learning in math, engineering, science and technology. Founded by late entrepreneur and philanthropist Ewing Marion Kauffman, the Foundation is based in Kansas City, Mo., and has approximately $2 billion in assets. For more information, visit www.kauffman.org, and follow the Foundation on www.twitter.com/kauffmanfdn.

About Gallup
Gallup has studied human nature and behavior for more than 70 years. Gallup's reputation for delivering relevant, timely and visionary research on what people around the world think and feel is the cornerstone of the organization. Gallup employs many of the world's leading scientists in management, economics, psychology and sociology, and our consultants assist leaders in identifying and monitoring behavioral economic indicators worldwide. Gallup consultants also help organizations boost organic growth by increasing customer engagement and maximizing employee productivity through measurement tools, coursework and strategic advisory services. Gallup's 2,000 professionals deliver services at client organizations, through the Web, at Gallup University's campuses and in 40 offices around the world.

About HDR
HDR is an employee-owned architectural, engineering and consulting firm with more than 7,800 professionals in 185 locations worldwide. All of them are committed to helping clients manage complex projects and make sound decisions. HDR is ranked No. 11 overall in the Engineering News-Record Top 500 Design Firms survey for 2010 and No. 18 in power. Learn more at www.hdrinc.com.

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