Entrepreneur-in-Residence Programs: One Size Does Not Fit All
Jessica M. Silvaggi,
Carlton J. Reeves.
Universities and state governments are increasingly looking towards their technology
transfer offices to aid in the incubation of new innovations to create new ventures and promote
economic development. For a new start-up company to succeed, a strong technology founder and
partners with business experience are crucial. Many universities are utilizing entrepreneur-inresidence
(EIR) programs to attract professionals with extensive industry or entrepreneurial
expertise to act as mentors for university researchers interested in forming a company. In this
review, we have surveyed 38 universities to determine common and best practices for active EIR
programs, and we review those results in terms of the different decisions a TTO needs to make
when designing their program. We dive deeper into specific details of some of the programs for
several top performing offices in the United States, including Columbia University, the University of Washington, Boston
University, the University of Minnesota, and the University of Michigan. We also describe in detail the newly formed EIR
program of a smaller research university at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee (UWM) which contrasts with the
common status quo of the more established programs. We illustrate how the UWM EIR program may be another useful
model for new technology transfer offices that are looking to stimulate the entrepreneurial ecosystem at the university in a
bottom up fashion.
Keywords: Entrepreneur, Entrepreneur-in-residence, Executive-in-residence, Incubator, Spin-out, Start-up, Technology transfer.
Rights & PermissionsPrintExport