Hawaii’s Innovation Strategy

The belief that science-based innovation fuels job creation, economic growth, and competitiveness is encouraging policymakers in nations and regions around the world to develop their own innovation strategies. These strategies seek to leverage the skills and knowledge found in research universities to create and attract companies, train and retain the talent needed to support a knowledge-based economy, and develop new capabilities in areas such as renewable energy and health care. Furthermore, these strategies employ programs that are built on partnerships among universities, private firms, government research facilities, foundations, and community organizations.

Recognizing the opportunities for growth based on innovation, the state of Hawaii is actively seeking to diversify its economy by drawing on the University of Hawaii system and other research and educational organizations as engines of sustainable, innovation-led growth. To this end, the University of Hawaii (UH) under the leadership of its new President, Dr. M.R.C. Greenwood, convened an I nnovation Council made up of nationally recognized experts to develop recommendations to grow the state’s knowledge-based economy. In launching the Council’s report, the University of Hawaii partnered with the National Academies Board on Science, Technology, and Economic Policy to convene a major conference in January 2011. This conference drew together the state’s political, academic, and business leadership, along with federal officials and national experts to highlight key challenges and opportunities facing Hawaii and to identify key steps toward meetings the Innovation Council’s objectives. This volume is a report of that conference, and this chapter provides an overview of key issues raised over the course of this two-day conference.



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Hawaii’s Innovation Strategy The belief that science-based innovation fuels job creation, economic growth, and competitiveness is encouraging policymakers in nations and regions around the world to develop their own innovation strategies. These strategies seek to leverage the skills and knowledge found in research universities to create and attract companies, train and retain the talent needed to support a knowledge- based economy, and develop new capabilities in areas such as renewable energy and health care. Furthermore, these strategies employ programs that are built on partnerships among universities, private firms, government research facilities, foundations, and community organizations. Recognizing the opportunities for growth based on innovation, the state of Hawaii is actively seeking to diversify its economy by drawing on the University of Hawaii system and other research and educational organizations as engines of sustainable, innovation-led growth. To this end, the University of Hawaii (UH) under the leadership of its new President, Dr. M.R.C. Greenwood, convened an Innovation Council made up of nationally recognized experts to develop recommendations to grow the state’s knowledge-based economy. In launching the Council’s report, the University of Hawaii partnered with the National Acad - emies Board on Science, Technology, and Economic Policy to convene a major conference in January 2011. This conference drew together the state’s political, academic, and business leadership, along with federal officials and national ex - perts to highlight key challenges and opportunities facing Hawaii and to identify key steps toward meetings the Innovation Council’s objectives. This volume is a report of that conference, and this chapter provides an overview of key issues raised over the course of this two-day conference. 3

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4 BUILDING HAWAII’S INNOVATION ECONOMY “We have what it takes. We have the intellect, the inquisitiveness, and an entrepre- neurial know-how to invent and incubate a knowledge sector in Hawaii.” “Over these many years, I’ve been honored to support the University of Hawaii’s research endeavors and to encourage the growth of our technology sector. It is my hope that this conference will encourage a greater intersection and connection between the two.” Senator Daniel Inouye Keynote address DIVERSIFYING HAWAII’S ECONOMY Hawaii’s unique location in the middle of the Pacific Ocean provides unique challenges as well as important opportunities. On one hand, the Hawaiian Islands are remote from the U.S. mainland, small geographically, with a population of nearly a million people. On the other hand, as Senators Inouye and Akaka pointed out in their conference keynotes, the islands are strategically located as America’s “front door” to the vibrant economies of East Asia and are home to unique geo- graphical features and land and marine life, as well as a rich cultural heritage. Indeed, the participation of U.S. Senators Inouye and Akaka, as well as Governor Abercrombie, Lieutenant Governor Schatz, and U.S. Representatives Hirono and Hanabusa at the conference telegraphed the strong commitment of Hawaii’s leadership to develop the state’s economy through investments in knowledge-based growth. The need to diversify and grow Hawaii’s economy was underscored by Dr. Carl Bonham of the University of Hawaii Economy Research Organization (UHERO), who reviewed the islands’ history of economic dependence on a series of single-products. This, he said, began some two centuries ago with the domina - tion of the sandalwood market and continued through export economies based successively on whaling, sugar, pineapple, the military, and, currently, tourism. The state is, and will probably continue to be, a popular destination for visitors worldwide who seek a reliably balmy climate in an exotic setting, but the growth potential for traditional tourism is limited by transportation, lodging, and other constraints. Dr. Bonham also noted that the island has also relied on the support of military bases since World War II, but the contribution of this sector is unlikely to grow significantly. While the state will certainly continue to benefit from visitor-based revenues and military spending, the challenge for this century, he said, is to develop the multi-sector, interdisciplinary capacities needed to generate S&T-based innova - tion and diversify the state’s opportunities for economic growth.

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5 OVERVIEW Percent of Economy FIGURE 1 Hawaii’s predominant industries, 1806-2009. SOURCE: Carl Bonham, Presentation at January 13-14, 2011, National Academies Sym - posium on “E Kamakani Noi’i (Wind that seeks knowledge).” New PROC gure 3 THE UNIVERSITY OF HAWAII AS AN ENGINE OF GROWTH Bitmapped In her conference presentation, University of Hawaii President M.R.C. Greenwood noted that her institution is seeking to become a major driver of in - novation and commercialization in the state by initiating an institution-wide effort to enhance awareness of the potential applications of research and encourage entrepreneurship in its curriculum design, course content, and faculty incentives. Setting Objectives Dr. Greenwood listed three objectives in defining her institution’s mission. The first objective, she said is to increase the number of educated citizens through the Hawaii Graduation Initiative. The second is to “create a 21st-century capabil - ity for innovation and technology transfer” supported by “a billion-dollar research industry for Hawaii.” The final objective is to renovate and rebuild the university’s infrastructure and to stimulate the creation of small businesses based on Univer- sity of Hawaii technology developments.

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6 BUILDING HAWAII’S INNOVATION ECONOMY Drawing on Expert Advice In seeking to fulfill this entrepreneurial vision, Dr. Greenwood sought ex- pert advice from both within and outside the state. In April 2010, President Greenwood formally named a University of Hawaii Innovation Council and charged its members with recommending how the university could best catalyze its own transformation and become a true leader in building regional economic leadership. The Innovation Council members included University of Hawaii faculty leaders, venture capitalists, a former Administrator of NASA, a dean at the University of California at San Diego, and the director of Stanford Uni - versity’s technology licensing office. The Council responded with a bold set of recommendations,1 advocating that the university should: • Identify research as an industry in Hawaii; • Establish a Hawaii Innovation Technology Exchange Institute (HiTEx); • Identify areas for commercialization opportunities; and • Integrate entrepreneurship into the curriculum. Partnering with Government A key element of the Innovation Council’s advice was to strengthen the uni- versity’s partnerships with other sectors, including the state’s political leadership. For example, Dr. Greenwood said that the University and Hawaii Governor Neil Abercrombie shared many views on how best to strengthen the state’s innovation capabilities. In his luncheon remarks to the conference, the first major speech on economic development since his inauguration a few weeks earlier, Governor Abercrombie’s emphasized the need for a strong partnership between the University of Hawaii and the state government. He noted that his own campaign document, “A New Day in Hawaii,” envisioned a key role in development for the university, explicitly en- couraging greater involvement for university faculty: “Support the entrepreneurial professor, facilitate innovation and technology transfer, support premier education and research projects.”2 Incentivizing Faculty Several symposium participants also drew attention to the desirability of providing more incentives for entrepreneurial and outreach activity by faculty members, emphasizing that entrepreneurship is found not only in technology, but 1 Access the Final Recommendations of the President’s Innovation Council Report at < http://www. hawaii.edu/offices/op/innovation/council-final-recommendations.pdf >. 2 Access the Campaign Document “New Day in Hawaii” at .

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7 OVERVIEW also in social networking, the arts, social sciences, and virtually all professions. In this regard, the dean of the University of Hawaii Medical School, Dr. Jerris Hedges, said that the process of promotion and tenure at his institution had been reviewed, leading to a decision to shift the reward system toward teamwork and partnerships of various kinds. “We want to reinforce that the landscape has changed and we’re expecting a different level of performance on the part of our faculty.” A related incentive, he said, was to reward contributions to collabora - tive grants and accomplishments in the private sector, such as the generation of patents and work with start-up companies. Partnering with Local Communities Such partnerships between large firms, small firms, universities, and govern- ment can yield tangible results. In his presentation, Dr. Luis Proenza, President of the University of Akron described the steps taken at his university not only to draw out and capitalize on existing resources and build new capacities, but also to reach out to the community and to create innovative structures that strengthen both educational and economic activities. For example, he noted that the Uni - versity of Akron had forged partnerships with the city’s hospitals around broad issues, such as community renovation and creation of a privately run university foundation that supports licensing. “We are no longer alone as a university,” he said, “but a key partner in the community and its knowledge economy.” BUILDING HAWAII’S INNOVATION ECONOMY Recognizing Hawaii’s unique assets as well as challenges, conference partici- pants identified a series of opportunities and challenges in developing Hawaii’s potential for knowledge-based growth. Securing Venture Capital Moving ideas from the laboratory to the marketplace requires more efficient flows of capital to young firms, and these flows were not yet adequate in Hawaii, said Dr. Wuh, an entrepreneur and a member of the University of Hawaii Inno- vation Council. To succeed, he said, entrepreneurs have to “follow the money. What we don’t want to do is create a society of great entrepreneurs only to see them leave the state because there are insufficient resources to support their businesses.” In his conference presentation, Mr. Weinman, a venture capitalist and a fellow member of the University of Hawaii Innovation Council, pointed out that some of the largest pools of private capital in Hawaii, including those of the Kamehameha Schools and the labor unions, are invested not in the state itself but on the mainland. One outcome of this custom, he said, is to deprive young firms

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8 BUILDING HAWAII’S INNOVATION ECONOMY of financial opportunities locally. The need for private engagement is especially great, said Mr. Weinman, in an era when the budgets of public universities are declining. “We see an urgent need for a seed capital fund for the university,” he said, “to put money into researchers with an entrepreneurial bent.” If this fund is privatized, he added, it would be able to act with the speed and initiative of a private company. While quick decisionmaking is seldom appropriate or even pos- sible for universities, it is a necessity for small firms. “If you want the university to be a research business,” he said, “you need to give it some of the freedoms of a research business.” Incentivizing Risk Taking A reluctance to take risks can inhibit a culture of entrepreneurship. But as some conference participants pointed out, this aversion to risk is often rooted in and reinforced by outmoded institutional practices. In his conference presenta - tion, Dr. Wuh noted that the acceptance of risk, although foreign to the commu - nity of university researchers, is well accepted and even necessary in a modern entrepreneurial culture. As he noted, “Failure is what you learn from.” In his remarks, Mr. Weinman added, “The University of Hawaii must move beyond the old ways of doing things, regardless of how well they fit the old mold of academia. These ways are too slow for entrepreneurs. We need to have people working at the University of Hawaii to go beyond research and help create spillovers and entrepreneurial activity. We have to change the thinking. In Silicon Valley, everyone wants to be an entrepreneur.” Another speaker, Daniel Golden, agreed with this prescription, adding, “The University of Hawaii’s task is not [just] to be the center of this [innovation] system, but to help build it.” Attracting Star Talent In his presentation, Art Ushijima highlighted the initiative taken by Hawaii’s Queen’s Medical Center to reach out to the mainland and Europe to attract several established “star” researchers to its staff and to help them establish facilities and infrastructure. One advantage of recruiting senior researchers, he said, is that they bring with them not only expertise, but also grants, graduate students, and collaborators. They are also likely to bring a degree of “path to market” expertise, a current focus of Queen’s, which is seeking to raise its own return on investment.3 3 This is the path taken by Singapore in its efforts to recruit star faculty and Nobel laureates. It is also the approach of the Canada Research Chairs program, which allocates $300 million a year to recruit internationally recognized leaders in their disciplines as well as exceptional emerging researchers seen by their peers to have potential to lead in their fields. Access the Government of Canada Web site at .

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9 OVERVIEW In doing so, Mr. Ushijima said, the hospital collaborates with the venture community and the medical school, seeking expertise as needed and building on the experiences of others. This initiative, he said, is already paying off in the form of new uses for established drugs, a novel solution to the blurring that often impairs MRI imaging, and a new use of PET scanning to visualize prostate cancer. The hospital has also developed a new approach to supporting research by setting aside a portion of indirect funds to generate interest until they are needed. Encouraging Civic Involvement In her conference presentation, Mary Walshok described how the commu- nity in San Diego, California, successfully mobilized to transform a region with an economy dependant on the presence of the military into one of the world’s most productive clusters of science-based economic activity. The rapid growth of research and research-based firms began around a core of outstanding research institutions: Scripps Institution of Oceanography (1903), General Atomics (1955), University of California at San Diego (UCSD, 1960), and the Salk Institute (1960). Today this core has grown to more than 50 research institutes, including the Sanford-Burnham Medical Research Institute, with substantial research budgets. Dr. Walshok said that San Diego provides a model for Hawaii in many respects. San Diego, she noted, began its innovation efforts in the 1960s when civic leaders wisely zoned land near the city’s major research institutions to favor young innovative companies. In turn, the city’s major institutions—including Salk, UCSD, and Scripps—used a strategy of hiring star researchers to develop a network of talented scientists in the region. In addition, universities developed curricula to develop the skills needed by emerging technology companies in the region. She cited the example of Irwin Jacobs, founder of Qualcomm, who needed engineers trained in his new wireless technology, CDMA, which was not being taught at other engineering schools. UCSD complied, and the company suc- ceeded.4 To overcome a relative paucity of investment capital, the city’s citizens themselves raised small amounts of seed money to attract the first new firms. Most of all, said Dr. Walshok, the region capitalized on the strong commitment to place of those who lived there to generate enormous volunteer energy. 4 Qualcomm illustrates the value of leveraging federal programs such as the Small Business In - novation Research Progam (SBIR). At a critical moment in the development of CDMA technology, Qualcomm received a series of SBIR awards that, according to the Qualcomm founder Irwin Jacobs, gave the firm credibility with investors and enabled them to further develop in this promising but at the time unproven technology. Qualcomm chips are, of course, the backbone for wireless communication, and the company now has nearly 18,000 employees, a market value of $90 billion, and has generated some 26,000 related jobs in the San Diego region. See Testimony by Irwin Jacobs before the Senate Small Business and Entrepreneurship Committee on February 19, 2011. In addition, see below the reference to SBIR by White House National Economic Council Advisor, Ginger Lew.

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10 BUILDING HAWAII’S INNOVATION ECONOMY In his presentation, Robert McLaren of the University of Hawaii Institute of Astronomy noted that the University of Hawaii’s Mauna Kea observatories have built strong links to the community.5 While the University’s Institute of Astronomy determines the direction of the scientific program, as it has done since its forma- tion in 1967, all other aspects of governance are now managed by the Mauna Kea Management Board, a community group that addresses environmental, cultural, and access issues. The planned Thirty-Meter Telescope (TMT), which will have nine times the light-collecting area of today’s largest telescopes, will be the first astronomical project to undergo the Management Board’s complete project review process, from the initial planning stages through construction and operation. Facilitating Technology Transfer from Universities Discussing how to move technologies into useful applications, Katherine Ku of Stanford’s technology licensing office told the symposium that despite Stanford’s success, the process of technology transfer is inherently slow and unpredictable, and did not respond well to a strategy of “chasing the dollars.” The higher good, she said, was to make new ideas useful. “We don’t want the technologies to lie fallow in the literature. I think we need the inventors to be championing the technology, and we want to help them. Our goal is not just to make money.” Another difficulty experienced by those who work in technology transfer offices, especially in state universities, was the feeling that “we can’t afford to fail.” “There are too many restrictions on those individuals,” said Barry Weinman. “These offices frustrate the innovators to the point where they don’t want to deal with them.” He firmly endorsed the use of a “501(c)3 strategy” to remove technol- ogy transfer in public universities, such as the UH, from the oversight of the state. Under an independent entity, he said, each technology can be addressed wholly on the basis of its commercial merits. Building on Natural Assets Several conference participants noted that when moving ahead with innova- tive development strategies, citizens of Hawaii are well aware of the potential of their state’s abundant natural assets, such as sunlight and wind, clean ocean water, geothermal energy sources, and its mountain peaks that serve as home to some of the world’s premier astronomical sites. 5 When the first major observatory was constructed on Mauna Kea in 1970, the University of Hawaii did not yet have a night-time astronomy program (it had one solar observatory on Halealakala, Maui). It nonetheless edged out both Harvard and the University of Arizona in winning NASA awards to construct a pioneering 2.2-meter observatory. A key step in this success was creation of the Institute of Astronomy, which continues to oversee the scientific programs of the 13 observatories, today the largest such complex in the world.

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11 OVERVIEW In his presentation, Mr. Maurice Kaya of the Hawaii Renewable Energy De- velopment Venture described the Hawaii Clean Energy Initiative, begun in 2009, as an effort to both conserve available resources and develop new, indigenous sources from wind, sun, geothermal heat, and biomass.6 He said that this plan has the objective of reducing the consumption of fossil fuels in Hawaii, which now account for 90 percent of energy consumption. The state intends to reduce fossil fuel consumption by 70 percent by the year 2030—an “unheard-of” goal, he said. Describing this goal as “economically essential,” Richard Rosenbloom, President of Hawaiian Electric Company noted that of a Gross State Product of $60 billion, more than $8 billion is spent on fossil fuels—a level deemed unsus - tainable by the state. According to Dr. Taylor, the advantages of developing Hawaii’s natural en - ergy resources reach far beyond energy savings and pollution reduction. By devel- oping new technologies in Hawaii rather than importing them from elsewhere, he said, the people of Hawaii would benefit locally by generating high-paying jobs, new careers for youth, energy security, and opportunities to export innovative technology, while diversifying income streams for owners of agricultural land. “We don’t know what the best technologies will prove to be,” said Dr. Taylor, “but when we do, we can teach others, and export knowledge instead of pineapples.” Leveraging Existing Assets While the Hawaiian islands continue to appeal to tourists around the world, this industry’s growth potential is limited, said Peter Ho, Chairman, President, and CEO of the Bank of Hawaii, and Chairman of the APEC 2011 Hawaii Host Committee. To maximize on its existing hotel stock, the state is seeking to draw more diverse business travelers at times of year when traditional tourism slows. Speaking at the roundtable session of the conference, Mr. Ho encouraged greater efforts to market the state for business and professional conventions, including from the economies of the Pacific Rim. Moreover, from this increased flow of business leaders and skilled people, Mr. Ho predicted that the state could expect new kinds of business collaborations to grow from APEC partnerships. According to Brian Taylor of the University of Hawaii School of Ocean and Earth Science and Technology, another long-existing resource that can be further developed is the Pacific Missile Range Facility (PMRF) on Kauai. To date, this site has been used primarily by NASA, off-island companies, and other nations to launch satellites into Earth orbit. However, the Hawaii Space Flight Laboratory 6 To prepare for this initiative, the state has also issued Hawaii’s Green Workforce: A Baseline Assessment (Department of Labor and Industrial Relations, Research and Statistics Office, December 2010). This survey estimates the number of jobs that contribute to environmental protection, identi - fies occupations involved with the “emerging green economy,” and identifies the training needs of a “green workforce.”

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12 BUILDING HAWAII’S INNOVATION ECONOMY (HSFL), operated by the University of Hawaii, is now poised to draw new enter- prises and technologies related to space launch to the state. Dr. Taylor said that HSFL is preparing to launch and operate small spacecraft from PMRF, which would make it the only university in the world with dedicated rocket launch capa- bility.7 The HSFL has begun to work in partnership not only with other university and federal laboratory groups, but also with Aerojet Corp. and other private firms in developing new technologies. While its use of CubeSats8 and other innovative techniques is at the cutting edge of space engineering, the program is also training a new workforce for Hawaii capable of entering careers in space-related fields and helping to diver- sify the state’s economy. In a parallel development, some of the engineers and technicians who have worked on astronomical facilities for the Mauna Kea and Haleakala sites, as well as for other NASA missions, have begun to use their skills to form spin-off companies based in the state. These companies are now employ - ing local workers in making space instruments for local and mainland clients. Developing Computing Capacity While the state is alert to opportunities to build on existing strengths, Dan Goldin, a former NASA Administrator, noted in his presentation that Hawaii needs to develop new capabilities to diversify its economy and advance its tech - nological competence. One area of much-needed growth, he said, is the informa - tion technology and computer science sector, where the state lags the national level of skilled people. Mr. Goldin observed that the growing worldwide glut of data and informa- tion presented a major opportunity for Hawaii. At a time when sensors and other sources of data produce information faster than it can be processed, analyzed, or even stored, he said, there is a growing need for expertise in data analytics, network analysis, artificial intelligence, and machine learning. Outlining Hawaii’s advantages in such an effort, he identified the islands’ favorable location amid the large and fast-growing markets of the Pacific region. He added that the state has a major advantage in the presence of the Hawaii Open Supercomputing Center, a Department of Defense Supercomputing Resource Center managed by the University of Hawaii. In addition, he noted that Hawaii happens to be immersed in the deep, cold waters of the Pacific Ocean, a nearly infinite and cost-effective source of cooling for the enormous demands of com - puter server farms. 7 Luke Flynn, HSFL director and Hawaii Institute of Geophysics, and Planetology specialist. 8 “A CubeSat is a type of miniaturized satellite for space research that usually has a volume of exactly 1 liter (10 cm cube), weighs no more than 1.33 kilograms, and typically uses commercial off-the-shelf electronics components. Beginning in 1999, California Polytechnic State University (Cal Poly) and Stanford University developed the CubeSat specifications to help universities worldwide to perform space science and exploration.” As defined in Wikipedia. Accessed on July 15, 2011.

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13 OVERVIEW To take advantage of this opportunity, Mr. Goldin said, the state needed to pass the 2008 Broadband Plan for Hawaii, which has he said been stymied by “turf disputes, bickering, and lack of will.” He noted that Hawaii must also raise the capabilities of its work force. Of the state work force, he said, just 1.4 percent was employed in jobs in the category of math and computer science; the national average for employment in this category was 2.5 percent. Finally, he noted that the state must also create a more innovation-friendly ecosystem. Mr. Goldin noted that he had tried several times to start businesses in Hawaii only to find the busi- ness environment to be unreceptive to entrepreneurship. Growing Innovation Clusters Barry Johnson of the Economic Development Administration (EDA) de- scribed how successful clusters can raise the effectiveness of regional assets, which include not only natural assets (such as geothermal resources, wind, and deep, cold water), but companies, educational institutions, and civic groups. He characterized regional innovation clusters as “geographic concentrations of firms and industries that do business with each other and have common needs for talent, technology, and infrastructure.” He added that public-private partnerships among companies, educational institutions, suppliers and customers, federal, local, and state governments, foundations and other non-profit entities, venture capital firms, and financial institutions can help create a climate in which businesses grow along with employment.9 Partnering with the Federal Government In her conference remarks, Ginger Lew of the White House National Eco - nomic Council observed that encouraging the development of regional clusters is a priority for the Obama administration. These clusters, she said, are an important mechanism to address the current economic slump and revive competitiveness. “As a nation,” said Ms. Lew, “we need to accelerate the transfer of technol - ogy from lab to market. The challenge we face in Hawaii and in many regions of the country is how best to connect innovative entrepreneurs to research insti - tutions and other key partners.” She noted that the Obama administration had designed specific policies to encourage cluster formation. The role of the federal government in doing so, she said, was based on knowledge sharing and network - ing rather than on large investment of resources. 9 For a review of the role that state and federal policies can play to foster innovation clusters, see National Research Council, Growing Innovation Clusters for American Prosperity: Summary of a Symposium, Charles W. Wessner, ed., Washington, D.C.: The National Academies Press, 2011. For an assessment of recent economic development policy initiatives, see Junbo Yu and Randall Jackson, “Regional Innovation Clusters: A Critical Review,” Growth and Change, 42(2), June 2011.

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14 BUILDING HAWAII’S INNOVATION ECONOMY Ms. Lew also highlighted the role that federal partnership programs like the Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) Program can play. Small companies often struggle for funds to develop new ideas, given that venture capital firms prefer to invest in products that already have revenues and companies with some experience in the marketplace. By providing the “first money” on the basis of a competitive selection process, she said, SBIR can help small innovative firms in Hawaii secure access to early-stage capital. In his conference remarks, Charles Wessner cited a recent study by the National Research Council that described the many contributions of SBIR, noting that over a third of the participants are new to the program each year. Overall, the report concluded that the SBIR program was “sound in concept and effective in operation.”10 MOVING FORWARD Recognizing that Hawaii is poised to move quickly to grow its innovation economy, academic, government, and business leaders participating in the confer- ence expressed a willingness to collaborate in overcoming the challenges facing this state, to draw on the advice of national experts, and to listen to the concerns of its indigenous community and other citizens. In drawing the conference to a close, Dr. Greenwood added a note of caution about Hawaii’s ability to accelerate quickly with a new strategy of technological innovation and commercialization. “This is not the first time for much of what we are proposing,” she said. The state developed a similar plan 15 years ago when a governor’s task force reported that University of Hawaii should be the economic engine for the state and should begin to commercialize some of its research, but that plan was not implemented. “The challenge is to do what we know we have to do,” she said, emphasizing the need to act based on the recommendations of the 2011 Hawaii Innovation Council Report. Responding to these remarks, Chuck Gee, a member of the University of Hawaii’s Board of Regents noted that the conference had strengthened his confidence in the university’s role as a driver for knowledge-based growth. He thanked the conference organizers for “bringing a new sense of excitement as to where we can go from here.” 10 National Research Council, An Assessment of the Small Business Innovation Research Program, Charles W. Wessner, ed., Washington, D.C.: The National Academies Press, 2008.