2021 Predictions

Here Comes the Sun: Here Comes 2021!

    For those of us on the East Coast of the US in the Northern Hemisphere, Winter Solstice is at Dec 21 at 5:20 am EST, when the Sun reaches its southernmost point in the sky as part of the longest night of the year. But each day after that the days get a bit longer. The Sun is returning.
    So, the longer days and return of the Sun is hopefully a metaphor for better days ahead in 2021. Clearly there is optimism with many vaccines in the offing, despite the current surging pandemic.
    What will be new for AURP in 2021?
    For the first half of the year, we expect our content will continue to be virtual.
    Expect a return of our Peer-to-Peer sessions and our Communicators check-in discussions in January. We are working on the Spring Training program that will be delivered in a different format from the usual February/March gathering. We also expect to have a virtual meeting of our BIO Health Caucus before the BIO International Convention in June, which we expect will also be virtual. The BIO Health Caucus features a discussion with state BIO affiliates that our members work with in their local jurisdictions, plus a panel on new NIH resources to build bio science companies and discussion on the role biotech incubators play in advancing startup companies.
    2021 will bring a session featuring the growth of energy research hubs (date TBA). With the new Biden Administration, we anticipate an influx of new funding for energy technologies. AURP will continue to monitor new research and innovation policies coming from the Biden Administration and Congress in the New Year, working with our colleagues from the State Science and Technology Institute (SSTI) and other members of the Innovation Coalition.
    We will Elevate Innovation at our annual International Conference which is taking place October 18-21, 2021 in-person at Salt Lake City, Utah, hosted by the University of Utah Research Park. Besides including virtual participation options, we plan to have a special pre-conference event called: In the Air and In Space: How Aero and Space Technologies are Building Communities of Innovation on the Ground. There is a lot of excitement in the aerospace and space tech communities with technologies ranging from commercial UAVs, the competition to house the nation’s US Space Command to a growing number of government and commercial space ports across the US and around the world.
    2021 also marks AURP’s 35th Anniversary! We were founded in 1986 in the state of Arizona as an international non-profit and have grown to represent communities of innovation sponsored by universities, municipalities, federal laboratories, hospital systems and others. We also now count as our members the many businesses planning, building and managing research parks and innovation districts around the globe.
    Please connect with us and if you have ideas about programming on these or other topics, new member referrals, or potential sponsors. Plus we encourage your participation on these planning or member services/engagement committees. Please contact Brian Darmody at briandarmody@aurp.net. We would love to hear from you.

    Happy Holidays to the AURP Community.
    Let’s have a great 2021!

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