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Explorations in Science and Technology

Incubating Innovation at Pitt


“If my science dies in a drawer somewhere instead of helping people, it serves no purpose,” says cardiologist Samir Saba. Pitt has a robust network of resources to bring science like Saba’s to the market.

Advanced defibrillators and pacemakers developed by Saba and his research team are among the devices and technologies that have been commercialized by Pitt’s Office of Technology Management (OTM).

Read about Saba’s work in the 2010 OTM Annual Report (PDF) and visit OTM’s Web site.

With support from resource partners throughout campus, OTM serves as the hub of all technology commercialization activities at Pitt—finding corporate sponsors, raising venture capital, and connecting to a wider audience. Those partners include the New Product Incubator at the Swanson School of Engineering, which helps engineers make prototypes faster.

Read about the New Product Incubator.

To help facilitate networking that brings research to the market, Pitt’s Center for Industry Studies (CIS) established the Industry Studies Association (ISA). Through ISA, Pitt researchers meet with the industry professionals who might find their work useful.

Read about ISA at Pitt's CIS.

Pitt’s Power and Energy Initiative, led by professor Gregory Reed, connects Pitt with Westinghouse Electric Co., CONSOL Energy, KEMA, and Allegheny Power to restore research and development in the electric power, nuclear energy, and coal mining industries.

Read about Pitt’s Power and Energy Initiative.

When it comes to introducing new products to market, design is as important as funding. In conjunction with Pitt’s Industrial Engineering Department at the Swanson School of Engineering, professor Christian Schunn and his team study what separates great product designs from merely good ones.

Explore Christian Schunn’s faculty page and read about his work in Educational Designer.

Pitt founded OTM in 1996, and its initiatives have grown in size and scope. Since 2006, for example, Pitt has filed 457 new U.S. patent applications, and overall revenue from Pitt’s commercialization efforts since 2005 totaled almost $34.3 million.