WASHINGTON – On Wednesday, leaders from Naval Surface Warfare Center, Crane Division (NSWC Crane) and other Indiana industry and academic partners briefed representatives from the Office of the Vice President and the Office of Science & Technology Policy on the innovation ecosystem Crane has helped develop in southern Indiana. High-ranking Department of Defense (DoD) and Navy officials were also in the room for the presentation.
The purpose of the briefing – which included NSWC Crane Technical Director, Dr. Brett Seidle, Indiana Chief Innovation Officer, Dave Roberts, and other key partners – was to highlight the regional innovation model that has emerged in the Midwest.
Other presenters included Indiana University Vice President for Engagement, Bill Stephan; President of the Purdue Research Foundation, Dan Hasler; and Cook Medical’s Vice President of Industry and Government Affairs, Dan Peterson.
Members of the innovation ecosystem – Daniela Vidal from the University of Southern Indiana, Radius Indiana’s Becky Skillman, and Tina Peterson of Regional Opportunity Initiatives – attended and supported the event.
“NSWC Crane is fostering the growth of a vibrant innovation ecosystem through the intentional outreach and development of strategic partnerships with industry, academia and other federal labs,” said Kyle Werner, NSWC Crane’s Director of Engagement. “The ecosystem we’ve helped develop is accelerating the speed of technology advancement, increasing access to federal facilities, and significantly enhancing the command’s ability to perform its assigned mission.”
Led by the Indiana Governor’s Office, a culture of innovation has been formed with NSWC Crane as a key technology driver in partnership with major regional universities and industry. During Vice President Mike Pence’s tenure as the Governor of Indiana, the state committed investments of $1 billion over the next decade toward innovation and entrepreneurship.
The Indiana Office of Defense Development (IODD), which focuses on growing Indiana’s defense sector by promoting the defense assets located within the state, supports the innovation ecosystem by assisting in the commercialization of DoD intellectual property (IP) and assets, creating additional high quality jobs for Indiana.
NSWC Crane has a broad and expansive IP portfolio consisting of 546 total pieces of IP. Crane also has 162 active technology transfer agreements, with a goal of reaching 200 by 2020.
The goal of Wednesday’s briefing was to examine success factors and communicate lessons learned from the public-private effort to stimulate regional economic growth, and to explore whether the southwestern Indiana regional innovation effort could be a model for other federal laboratories to follow.
“NSWC Crane is fortunate to receive strong collaborative support from our many state and regional partners,” Werner said. “It is an honor to be invited by the Office of the Vice President to share key aspects of the NSWC Crane innovation story as we continuously strive to deliver cutting-edge sensor and weapon system solutions to our nation’s warfighters.”
NSWC Crane is a naval laboratory and a field activity of Naval Sea Systems Command (NAVSEA). NSWC Crane is responsible for multi-domain, multi-spectral, full life cycle support of technologies and systems enhancing capability of today’s warfighter.