Lesa Mitchell, vice-president of innovation and networks at the Kauffman Foundation, said: "This research supports the notion that graduate students have an important role in commercialising their inventions from the university lab and they need support models to help them advance to the commercial marketplace."

PhD students, not just their professors, are important as entrepreneurs in getting inventions from university lab benches to the market, according to academic research. The paper, From Lab Bench to Innovation: Critical Challenges to Nascent Academic Entrepreneurs, looked at 10 nascent academic entrepreneurs (NAEs) involved in eight ventures at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology’s (MIT) Venture…

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