April 2017 Newsletter: Collaborating and Inspiring to Grow New Jersey's Innovation Economy

Written by
Maura M. Fennessy
April 13, 2017

According to a report released earlier this year, Princeton University directly and indirectly accounted for $1.58 billion in economic output in FY2015, supporting 13,450 jobs with earnings totaling $970.7 million. The report highlights the efforts of the University - and its $457.6 million in externally and internally funded research expenditures - to build upon the research and innovation ecosystem in New Jersey. This includes a growing emphasis on developing real-world applications of basic research findings, programs to encourage entrepreneurism and research collaborations with industry partners.

This issue of @princeton.edu features many of the ways in which the University teams up with Rutgers and New Jersey companies, supports entrepreneurship and efforts to transfer technology into the marketplace, and inspires the next generation of scientists to enhance New Jersey's culture of innovation.


Coleen Burrus standing in front of sign for Andlinger Center for Energy and the Environment at Princeton University

Promoting Princeton: University making concerted push to engage businesses in effort to spur more partnerships and collaboration
NJBIZ, January 23,2017

Coleen Burrus added one word to her title shortly after being hired by Princeton University in spring 2015.  Director of corporate and foundation relations quickly became director of corporate engagement and foundation relations.  The simple move was meant to convey a specific shift at the college. "We want to send the message that Princeton wants to be engaged with companies in a comprehensive way," Burrus said.  And not just companies; New Jersey companies. Read more. 

Arturo Pizano, Program manager for university relations for Siemens in Princeton, NJ

Case in Point
One of these partnerships is with Siemens Corporate Technology, located in Princeton. Siemens works with Princeton University and a number of other universities to support R&D and to tap pipelines of student talent for job recruitment. Arturo Pizano, program manager for university relations at Siemens, believes such partnerships contribute to a robust R&D ecosystem across New Jersey. "Siemens is a global powerhouse focusing on the areas of electrification. This is an environment where new innovations are rapidly emerging and where you can't accomplish everything through internal resources alone. We're able to engage with Princeton's faculty members and students, and this exchange of ideas and expertise helps shape the company's technology roadmap."

To learn more about research partnerships at Princeton, visit the University's Office of Corporate Engagement and Foundation Relations.



Image of cells infected with hepatitis E virus

Viral escape hatch could be treatment target for hepatits E
Researchers at Princeton and Rutgers universities have found that the hepatitis E virus - an emerging liver virus historically found in developing countries but now on the rise in Europe - uses a technique to spread infection that scientists could in fact exploit to treat the disease. This research was supported by funding from the New Jersey Commission on Cancer Research.  Read more.



Yael Niv portrait

New Rutgers-Princeton center uses computational models to understand psychiatric condition
A new center is bringing together researchers from Princeton and Rutgers universities to apply computational modeling to the understanding of psychiatric diseases. The Rutgers-Princeton Center for Computational Cognitive Neuropsychiatry, which opened its doors in February, aims to improve the diagnosis of mental disorders, better predict their progression and eventually aid in developing treatments.

The center, located at Rutgers University Behavioral Health Care in Piscataway, features a 1,400-square foot facility with rooms for conducting patient intake and testing. It is supported by matching funds from Princeton and Rutgers.  Read more.

M. Zahid Hasan and research team at Princeton

Artificial topological matter opens new research directions
M. Zahid Hasan, professor of physics at Princeton University, along with colleagues at Rutgers University and an international team is moving forward on ways to turn on and off the topological properties in new materials. The study was published in the journal Science Advances.   Read more.





Assemblymembers Dan Benson and Wayne DeAngelo talk to girls from West Windsor Plainsboro High School at Young Women's STEM Conference at Princeton University

More than 600 girls encouraged to reach for the stars at PPPL's Young Women's conference
NASA aerospace engineer Aprille Ericsson told more than 600 seventh- to tenth-grade girls at the Princeton Plasma Physics Laboratory's Young Women's Conference that she was depending on them to pursue their dreams and make their ideas a reality in the wide-open field of Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM).

Assemblyman Dan Benson, who visited the event with Assemblyman Wayne DeAngelo, both from the 14th district, said he was impressed by the conference. "This really opens up their eyes to how many avenues there are in the STEM fields."  Read more.

Portrait of Sally Jiao, junior at Princeton University

Four Princeton students named Goldwater Scholars for STEM study
Four Princeton juniors, including Sally Jiao of Plainsboro, NJ, have been awarded one-year Goldwater Scholarships, the premier award for outstanding undergraduates interested in careers in mathematics, the natural sciences and engineering. The scholarship program honoring Sen. Barry Goldwater was created as part of the Goldwater Foundation, a federally endowed agency instituted by an act of Congress in 1986.   Read more.




Princeton graduate student Robert Pagels, with fellow graduate student Chester Markwalter, Mark Barbieri, partner at Wiss and Co., and Cornelia Huellstrunk, executive director of Princeton's Keller Center,  accepting top award at Innovation Forum

Medical innovations, smart sensors and more impress judges at Innovation Forum
The Keller Center's 12th Annual Innovation Forum held in February showcased Princeton research that has the potential to be commercialized and gave researchers a chance to pitch their work to a panel of investors, entrepreneurs and technology leaders. Graduate student Robert Pagels of chemical and biological engineering delivered the event's winning pitch, earning his team $15,000 to put toward technology to package multiple doses of medicine into microscopically small particles for controlled release in a patient. Learn more.


Elie Bou-Zeid, associate professor of civil and environmental engineering, Marcus Hultmakr, assistant professor of mechanical and aerospace engineering, and Forrest Meggars, assistant professor of architecture and the Andlinger Center

Schmidt Fund awards go to projects with transformative potential
Three projects with the potential for broad impacts in science and technology have been selected to receive support from the Eric and Wendy Schmidt Transformative Technology Fund, a $25 million endowment fund created to support the development of new technologies at Princeton University that could have broad beneficial impacts. The projects include a technology for improving ultrasound's grainy images, a system for boosting biofuel production, and a facility for designing and testing new wind power technologies. Read more.

Learn more about Princeton University's programs to support technology transfer and entrepreneurship.



Why Government Can't (and Shouldn't) Run Just Like a Business
Wednesday, April 19, 2017, 4:30pm - 6:00pm, Robertson Hall

Jared Kushner, President Trump's son-in-law and senior advisor, recently argued, "The government should be run like a great American company." Can government run like a business? Should it?  On April 19, Beth F. Cobert '80, former acting director of the U.S. Office of Personnel Management (OPM), will give a talk titled "Why Government Can't (and Shouldn't) Run Just Like a Business."

The Civil Rights Movement:Through the Lens of Julius Lester
Thursday, April 20, 2017, 4:30pm, Robertson Hall Bowl 016

The event is being held in conjunction with an art exhibit that will feature the photographs of author, poet, musician, and Civil Rights activist and photographer, Julius Lester.  The exhibit will be on display from April 14 to May18, 2017 in the Bernstein Gallery, on the lower level of Robertson Hall.

Behavioral Policy Speaker Series: Cecilia Mo, "When do the Advantaged See the Disadvantages of Others? A Quasi-Experimental Study of National Service"
Thursday, May 4, 2017, 4:30pm - 6:00pm, 399 Julis Romo Rabinwitz Building

Are there mechanisms by which the "haves" can see the perspective of the "have nots"? If advantaged individuals have prolonged engagement with disadvantaged populations and confront issues of inequality through national service, do they see the world more through the lens of the poor? Mo explores this question by examining Teach For America, a prominent national service program that integrates top college graduates into low-income communities for two years.

Princeton Research Day
Thursday, May 11, 2017

The campus-wide event serves as an opportunity for researchers and artists to share their work with the community and includes research from the natural sciences, social sciences, engineering, the arts and humanities. The program features talks, posters, performances, art exhibitions, demonstrations, digital presentations and an awards ceremony for outstanding contributions. The event is free and open to the public.