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Secretary Locke Visits Research Triangle for Public Forum on Innovation, Entrpreneurship and Education

Steve Case, right, listens as Secretary of Commerce Gary Locke talks during a meeting of leading innovative thinkers and entrepreneurs who make up President Barack Obama’s National Advisory Council on Innovation and Entrepreneurship.

U.S. Commerce Secretary Gary Locke was joined by North Carolina Governor Beverly Perdue at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill today to participate in the first town hall-style public forum of the National Advisory Council on Innovation and Entrepreneurship (NACIE) and discuss the importance of education to U.S. competitiveness.  Today's press release
At the meeting, NACIE subcommittees presented updates to Locke and the full Council on their work developing recommendations on how to better incentivize innovation and entrepreneurship to help America win the future by out-innovating, out-educating and out-building our economic competitors.

Incorporating a wide range of stakeholder input, reports included initiatives to develop new cross-college, cross-disciplinary educational programs that connect business with science, math, technology and engineering fields and extend these programs to young people in underserved and low-income areas by involving community colleges in consortia for training and mentoring in innovation and entrepreneurial activities.

The Council also discussed efforts to reform how ideas and research from federally funded university labs - like those at UNC - reach the marketplace, sustain innovators’ and entrepreneurs’ access to capital, and celebrate the role of innovators and entrepreneurs in driving job creation and economic growth. Following the meeting, the Council took questions from local business leaders, faculty and staff in the public audience.

First announced in 2009, the NACIE advises Locke and the administration on key innovation and entrepreneurship issues and engages with the public and stakeholders to promote effective public policies and regulations. Hosted by UNC Chancellor and NACIE member Holden Thorp, the forum was the first meeting of the Council outside Washington, D.C.

Read Secretary Locke’s Remarks at the National Advisory Council on Innovation and Entrepreneurship forum in Chapel Hill, N.C.

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