LAUNCHPAD’s Research to Market (R2M) Workshop  is a 6-week program intended to ensure product-market fit for each participating team. The R2M program leverages the Lean Launchpad and Business Model Canvas methodologies.  These methodologies form the basis of curricula utilized by the Department of Energy’s Energy I-Corps program and the National Science Foundation’s I-Corps program, both nationally recognized as thought leaders in commercialization of cutting edge science technologies.

This program includes workshops, webinars, intensive classroom instruction, and the opportunity to be screened for $3K travel grants from the Colorado-Corps program, to be used to offset costs for customer discovery (CSU-affiliated teams).

The workshop is open to academic-based teams from across Colorado.  Teams from outside CSU will be invited by the LAUNCHPAD team on a team by team basis.  Please note that for CSU-Affiliated teams, the costs for the program are fully paid by CSUV and the State of Colorado. 

Good To Know

What are the Components of the Research to Market Workshop?
The six-week program combines core elements of NSF I Corps Customer Discovery program and USDOE Energy I Corps training into a unique program tailored to the specific needs of CSU and its partnering institutions. 

Each  team must:

  • participate in a two full-day introduction to the Lean Launchpad business development process,
  • attend three webinars,
  • conduct 35 customer interviews, and
  • attend a two full-day closing session during which they must deliver a detailed workflow landscape, value chain, supply chain, and mature Business Model Canvas.


Which Individuals Comprise a Team?
Teams will be made up of distinct members.    CSUV will work closely with each group to develop the team makeup.  

Principal Investigator (PI): The technical lead and project manager based at the university is responsible for overall team management. A significant amount of the PI’s time should be committed to this project during the training period. Previous commercialization experience is not required.   

    • Expectations 
      • Participation in the critical components of the in-person meetings (five in-person days) 
      • Participation in Mid-Program Webinars (2) 
      • Participation in Mid-Program Office Hours arranged by Entrepreneural Lead (EL) (3) 
      • Direct engagement with EL to support program and team goals 
      • Eligible candidates include: Professors, research associates, postdoctoral scholars, and graduate students.

Entrepreneurial Lead (EL): The Entrepreneurial Lead is expected to be the primary participant that leads the team through the customer discovery process.  The EL is expected to commit the most time towards the core training period and should expect to contribute the most to conducting customer interviews and developing the commercialization plan.  

    • Expectations 
      • Full participation in all events throughout the program (five in-person days and 5 in-program week meetings) 
      • Actively leads team through the R2M program 
      • Schedules and leads the mid-program office hours for all constituents 
      • Arranges, schedules, and leads stakeholder interviews 
      • Prepares and delivers daily/weekly presentations 
      • Eligible candidates include, but are not limited to, laboratory staff (beyond the PI), serial entrepreneurs, postdoctoral scholars, graduate students. 

Industry Mentor (IM): Ideally, the Industry Mentor should be an experienced industry representative or entrepreneur with substantial sector expertise. He or she will be responsible for providing mentorship to the EL and PI through the learning experience. To ensure unbiased mentorship, the IM should not have a direct interest in the team’s technology or intellectual property. The IM provides direction and support but is not expected to do the day-to- day work. This role is a volunteer position.   CSUV’s partner, Innosphere has agreed to support the identification of Industry Mentors for each team.  CSUV, the grant recipient and Innosphere will work together to find the right fit for each team.  

    • Expectations
      • Meet with the team
        • daily during the In-Person Trainings (five in-person days) 
        • During Mid-Program Office Hours 
        • Work directly with the Entrepreneurial Lead to  
          • Provide further insight into business approach/pathway to market 
          • Provide access to Industry Mentor’s personal network for stakeholder discovery within the target market 

CSU Ventures Ambassador (AM): CSU Ventures will assign a graduate student Ambassador to each team.  The ambassador will be responsible for conducting prior art searches, secondary marketing searches as well as deal-flow searches for the team.  They will attend all In-Person Trainings with the team, but will not be expected to conduct and/or participate in stakeholder interviewing during the program.   

    • Expectations 
      • Attendance at all In-Person Trainings 
      • Work with team during event, but not expected to be on team outside of events 
      • Develop the following support mechanisms 
      • Prior Art analysis 
      • Market Analysis 
      • Not expected to engage in interviews (unless specifically approved by LAUNCHPAD leadership)  
How are the R2M Workshop Teams Selected?
Many teams are sourced directly from CSU as a requirement of receiving a FUEL Program Grant.  Additional teams may apply for consideration by contacting LAUNCHPAD Leadership (Steve.Albers@colostate.edu), or by being recommended to the program by their University Technology Transfer Office.
What is the Time Commitment & Program Expectations?

Teams are required to take part in approximately 24 hours of in-person training, 6 hours of webinar training and 6-10 hours of pre-work/homework/workshops to prepare for the program. Additional time will be required of participants based on stakeholder interview requirements discussed later in the statement of work.  Each team will be expected to collect 30 stakeholder interviews during the program. 

An example schedule of the required components: 
Note:  PI – Primary Investigator, EL = Entrepreneurial Lead, IM = Industry Mentor, AM = CSU Ventures Ambassador (if assigned))

  • Prep Workshop II 
    • Description: Webinar will lay the groundwork for a better understanding of core components of the R2M program.  In addition, teams will start building a better understanding of the foundations that will be built during the entire program.   
    • Expected participants: PI, EL, IM, AM 
  • Introductory In-Person Trainings (3 days) 
    • Description: In-person trainings include seminars on Lean Launchpad, Business Model Canvas and the do’s and don’ts of stakeholder interviewing and discovery.   
    • Expected participants: PI, EL, IM, AM 
  • Mid-Program Webinars (2) 
    • Description: Teams will present to the entire cohort as well as to the instructors and will receive feedback on progress, strategy, etc.  
    • Expected participants: PI, EL, IM 
  • Mid-Program Office Hours (3) 
    • Description: Teams will meet with selected instructors and will receive feedback on progress, strategy, etc.  
    • Expected participants: PI, EL, IM 
  • Program Wrap-Up In-Person Trainings (2 days) 
    • Description: Teams will have the opportunity to engage with instructors and other teams to discuss progress, lessons learned, strategies moving forward, etc. 
    • Expected participants: PI, EL, IM, AM 
Previous Cohorts - Team Leadership
Team Leads are from CSU, unless otherwise noted

Cohort 3:  2018

  • Garret Miyake, PhD, Assistant Professor, Department of Chemistry
  • Jay Ham, PhD, Professor, Department of Soil and Crop Sciences
  • Susan James, PhD, Professor, Department of Mechanical Engineering
  • Ron Tjalkens, PhD, Professor, Department of Environmental and Radiological Health Sciences
  • Tiezheng Tong, PhD, Assistant Professor, Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering
  • Chris Ackerson, PhD, Associate Professor, Department of Chemistry
  • Tiana Magee, PhD, Assistant Professor, Department of Biomedical Sciences
  • Susanta K. Sarkar, PhD, Assistant Professor, Department of Physics, Colorado School of Mines

Cohort 2:  2018

  • Todd Bandhauer, Assistant Professor, Department of Mechanical Engineering
  • Elaine Carnevale, Professor, Department of Biomedical Sciences
  • Eugene Chen, Professor, Department of Chemistry
  • Seth Donahue, Associate Professor, Department of Mechanical Engineering
  • Amanda Guth, Assistant Professor, Department of Clinical Sciences
  • Ray Goodrich, Board member and Secretary of PhotonPharma, Inc.
  • Susan Bailey, Professor, Department of Environmental and Radiological Health Sciences
  • Chris Snow, Professor, Department of Chemical and Biological Engineering
  • Jorge Rocca, Carmen Menoni, Professors, Electrical and Computer Engineering

Cohort 1: 2017

  • Mark Schleiger & Thomas Reilly, Access Sensor Technologies
  • Arun Kota, Former Assistant Professor, Department of Mechanical Engineering
  • Asma Hanif, Research Associate, Department of Civil & Environmental Engineering
  • Todd Bandhauer, Assistant Professor, Department of Mechanical Engineering
  • Kyle Benne, Dan Macumber, Michael Leahey – National Renewable Energy Lab
  • Dane Christensen, Scott Carmichael, Rob Sewell – National Renewable Energy Lab
  • Michael Guarnieri, Calvin Henard, Bill Schafer – National Renewable Energy Lab
  • Calvin Mukarakate, Nolan Wilson, John Aikens – National Renewable Energy Lab
  • Susan Habas, Fred Baddour – National Renewable Energy Lab