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Approaching Innovation with Interest
Approaching Innovation with Interest

Joe Janda, Director of the office of Innovation & Intellectual Property at Portland State University, has made it his mission to promote the use of PSU innovations and to see that those innovations have the greatest possible impact on our local and global communities. It is a task at which Joe has worked since he joined the office in 2007.

Joe spent nearly 5 years in a Ph.D. program in genetics, but in 2004 he left his graduate program with a Master's degree in Molecular Biology for an internship in the office of Technology Licensing and Industry Relations at the State University of New York at Stony Brook where he had been working during his graduate studies. Joe went on to manage the life sciences intellectual property portfolio at George Mason University. In 2007 Joe came to PSU to take the position of Innovation Associate in the newly formed technology transfer office. In September 2011, Joe became the Director of IIP after working for a short time as the Technology Development Manager for Oregon Health & Science University's Knight Cancer Institute.

As Director of IIP, Joe has been working with faculty members, students, and the greater business community with the goal of helping researchers shape the ways their innovations reach beyond the walls of the University.

"We want to know what people are doing," Joe noted. "In cases where an invention may have an impact, we'll put our professional experiences to the task of developing a plan to take the project forward. We want to hear about their goals, their interests, what do they get excited about when they come to work in the morning. And I'd like to think that together we can change the world, or at least small parts of it." It's a part of IIP's operational philosophy: the belief that the greatest impact comes from successful relationships, and that successful relationships start with shared interest.