AB 2664 funds spur innovation, entrepreneurship

A $22 million investment from the state is propelling new innovation and entrepreneurship efforts across the University of California through investments in infrastructure, incubators and entrepreneurship education programs.

Each of UC’s 10 campuses has just received $2.2 million in one-time funding from Assembly Bill 2664, the Innovation and Entrepreneurship Expansion authored by Assembly member Jacqui Irwin, D-Thousand Oaks, and signed last fall by Gov. Brown.

“The possibilities these funds bring have injected a great sense of excitement and energy within each UC campus,” said Christine Gulbranson, UC’s senior vice president for innovation and entrepreneurship. “The new infrastructure and programs to support student and faculty innovation and entrepreneurship made possible through Assemblywoman Irwin’s vision, the Legislature’s support, and the governor’s backing will pay educational and economic dividends to California for decades to come.”

Said Irwin, “The UC system is the gold standard for research and innovation. That’s why I’m proud to have authored AB 2664. The bill’s funding will help convert UC research into products that benefit society. It will lead to more startup businesses and local economic growth. Whether it’s an artificial kidney or water conservation tool, I look forward to seeing how each campus will tailor these grants to bolster its most promising research.”

Leveraging private sector partnerships, each campus is executing long-term plans suited to its strengths and the needs of local and regional communities. Various programs include:

  • Amplified outreach to underrepresented groups that include women, minorities and veterans
  • Increased seed and proof-of-concept funding to bridge the gap between innovation-based research and market-driven products
  • Expanded lab and incubator capacity
  • Enhanced deployment of successful programs across campuses and among research labs
  • Accelerated startup launch and growth
  • Increased networking, mentoring, internship and entrepreneurship education opportunities

The University is an intellectual and economic powerhouse, not only in California but throughout the world. UC generates five inventions per day and more patents than any other university in the country. UC graduate students found a new startup every two weeks. UC-affiliated companies employ more than 38,000 workers across a wide range of industries, adding over $20 billion in value to the state economy.