Nine technology-based economic development organizations from across the U.S. have joined forces to form the Agricultural Technology Innovation Partnership Foundation, which will facilitate public-private research and technology licensing partnerships, and promote USDA Agricultural Research Service research.
The ATIP Foundation will receive USDA requests to develop public-private collaboration on two specific initiatives: land management practices to sustain soil health for producing food, feed, fiber and biofuels; and improving food and public health, specifically translating nutrition research results to the food supply to combat obesity.
The Foundation will assist in the formation of partnerships between government, industry and academic research and development. Similarly, the ATIP Foundation will approach the USDA with private sector research needs to seek the expertise of the USDA's science and technology agencies.
"We expect our partnership with USDA will produce results that the agricultural community will use to solve some of the most difficult problems facing our country today," said Wes Jurey, ATIP Foundation organizing member. "Private capital combined with the expertise of public researchers and the Foundation's tech-based business know-how will achieve efficiencies in R&D that were not previously possible."
In January 2013, the ATIP Foundation's members appointed Richard Brenner, Ph.D., as Director. Brenner's role is to coordinate activities of the member organizations in planning regional events to deliver solutions to the agricultural sector, and to develop outreach strategies for the private sector.
"With the world population expected to exceed nine billion by 2050, increased demand for food and water will challenge our agricultural R&D infrastructure at a time when federal resources are diminishing," said Brenner. "This Foundation represents a new model for enhancing economic sustainability and U.S. competitiveness through public-private partnerships capitalizing on federal scientific research."
The ATIP Foundation is a 501(c)(3) non-profit entity with offices in Arlington, Texas, and member offices in eight states. It is governed by members comprised of its founding economic development organizations: the Maryland Technology Development Corporation; Innovate Mississippi; the Wisconsin Security Research Consortium; the Georgia Research Alliance; Pennsylvania's Ben Franklin Technology Development Authority; the California Association for Local Economic Development; the Kansas Bioscience Authority; the Center for Innovation at Arlington, Texas; and the Center for Innovative Food Technology in Toledo, Ohio.
Each member of the Foundation also has a separate agreement with ARS.
"ARS scientists look forward to working with the ATIP Foundation and its member organizations to enhance transfer of important research results and technology to private use for the benefit of our country. ARS has a long history of successfully moving technologies into use from penicillin to enhanced cotton products, to enhanced animal and plant varieties. Through both educational and commercial means this Foundation can help the process move more quickly," said Edward Knipling, Administrator of ARS.
For more information on the ATIP Foundation and its members, visit www.atipfoundation.com.