News

News Releases
October 14, 2015

14 Student Teams Nationwide Address Social and Environmental Issues through Invention 

Cambridge, Mass., October 14, 2015 – The Lemelson-MIT Program awarded 14 teams of high school students up to $10,000 each in grant funding today as part of its 2015–2016 InvenTeam initiative to inspire young people to solve real-world problems through invention. Guided by the principle that invention can solve many of the biggest social and economic challenges of our time, this year’s students are working on inventions that address problems they’ve recognized in their local communities and those with global impact. Some of the student teams are developing inventions that address water consumption in California and multiple teams are inventing to help improve the lives of others around the world.

News Releases
October 6, 2015

India is a country of glaring contrasts: 400 million people living in extreme poverty alongside a growing middle class; persistent and prevalent challenges like unsafe water, air, and sanitation in a nation that just sent a mission to Mars; 2.9 million young people studying engineering but many unable to find jobs.

The Lemelson Foundation believes that invention can reconcile many of these disparities and improve the lives of millions of Indians. But invention-based businesses in India need a more supportive environment in order to realize their full potential.

News Releases
October 6, 2015

New report released by The Lemelson Foundation highlights gaps in financing, technical assistance, mentoring; provides concrete solutions to help invention-based businesses thrive 

Portland, OR – The Lemelson Foundation, the world’s leading funder of invention in service of social and economic change, today released a new report, Catalyzing Capital for Invention: Spotlight on India. The report examines India’s “impact ecosystem,” the broad network of businesses, funders, and intermediaries that enable social enterprise, and hones in on challenges that limit inventors’ potential. 

News Releases
September 25, 2015

Last week, The Lemelson Foundation celebrated our 20th anniversary with a look at the work supported by our grantees and partners, and an optimistic look forward to the future of Impact Inventing.

The celebration held at the Ronald Regan International Trade Center in Washington, DC consisted of a day of informative panels, invention spotlights, inspiring videos, and informal networking of inventors young and old. A dynamic collection of grantees and sub-grantees discussed triumphant successes and resilience-building failures along each step of their journey as inventors. Speakers ranged from students at Cesar Chavez High School in Arizona to the inventor of the digital camera to heads of Lemelson-supported invention incubators in Africa, India, and Latin America.

News Releases
September 18, 2015

Portland-based grantmaker joins more than 100 other foundations divesting from carbon-based industries like coal, oil and gas

 

Portland, OR, September 18, 2015 – The Lemelson Foundation, the world’s leading funder of invention in service of improving lives and promoting social and economic progress, today announced it will sign on in support of DivestInvest Philanthropy, a growing coalition of more than 100 foundations that have made public commitments to divest from fossil fuels and invest in clean energy and climate solutions.  

News Releases
September 15, 2015

As part of our 20th Anniversary celebration, the Smithsonian’s Lemelson Center for the Study of Invention and Innovation, in conjunction with The Lemelson Foundation, presents the Impact Inventing Showcase.  Three 35-45 minute sessions, occurring on the hour, will feature two inventors and a curator from the National Museum of American History on a specific theme.  Each inventor will show and explain their invention and then join a curator in a conversation that will highlight the theme of impact inventing and explore the invention process and the impact of the inventions.  A brief Q&A period will round out each session. 

News Releases
September 15, 2015

Jay Whitacre, Ph.D., a Materials Scientist and Professor at Carnegie Mellon University’s College of Engineering, is the recipient of the 2015 $500,000 Lemelson-MIT Prize. Whitacre is the inventor of the Aqueous Hybrid Ion (AHI™) battery, a reliable, environmentally-benign and cost-efficient energy storage system. This first-of-its-kind battery, often used in combination with solar and wind energy systems, stores significant amounts of energy at a low cost per joule and allows for around-the-clock consumption.

News Releases
July 10, 2015

For more than 20 years The Lemelson Foundation has been committed to the power of invention to improve lives. While inventions come in many forms, the Foundation’s work is focused on those that help solve the world’s most complex and systemic problems with true and lasting impact.

We call this impact inventing and it has three central tenets:inventions need to have positive social impact, be environmentally responsible, and be financially self-sustaining. While all three aspects of impact inventing are interrelated and important, positive social impact is essential. Without it, we will never be able to address the current challenges we face as a global population.

News Releases
July 8, 2015

Graham Pugh, David Coronado, and Kenneth Turner deepen the Foundation’s ability to foster young inventors and invention-based businesses 

Portland, OR, June 24, 2015 – The Lemelson Foundation, the world’s leading funder of invention in service of social and economic change, announced today that it has hired three new team members, expanding its capacity both locally and globally. Graham Pugh will serve as deputy director and David Coronado and Kenneth Turner have joined the Foundation as program officers. These hires significantly increase the Foundation’s capacity to build ecosystems that inspire and educate the next generation of inventors, and incubate invention-based businesses in the US and developing countries.

News Releases
June 29, 2015

Portland, OR, June 29, 2015 – The Lemelson Foundation, the world’s leading funder of invention in service of social and economic change, today announced endowment of the Arthur Molella Distinguished Fellowship at the Smithsonian’s National Museum of American History (NMAH). Honoring Dr. Arthur Molella’s long career of scholarship in the history of science and technology, the $780,000 endowment will establish a scholar-in-residence program at the museum’s Jerome and Dorothy Lemelson Center for the Study of Invention and Innovation. A public historian for over four decades, Dr. Molella has served as the director of the Lemelson Center for more than 20 years. He will step down from that post this summer but continue to work with the center in an emeritus role.  

News Releases
May 19, 2015

CAMBRIDGE, Mass., May 19, 2015 – The Lemelson-MIT Program today announced the winners of the Lemelson-MIT National Collegiate Student Prize Competition (NCSPC), a nationwide search for the most inventive team of undergraduate and individual graduate students. The Lemelson-MIT Program awarded $65,000 in prizes for inventions in the healthcare, transportation, food and agriculture, and consumer device spaces. Each winning team of undergraduates received $10,000, and each graduate student winner received $15,000. The winners of this year’s competition were selected from a diverse and highly competitive applicant pool of students from 28 colleges and universities across the country. 

News Releases
April 23, 2015

Gift will fund statewide program addressing critical need for invention and STEM education

PORTLAND (OR) – APRIL 23, 2015 –The Lemelson Foundation has awarded a grant totaling $706,000 to the Portland State University Foundation to support Oregon MESA’s (Math Engineering Science Achievement) statewide invention education activities that build on science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) skills. The new grant expands the work of the MESA program to help underserved youth pursue math-based higher education and STEM-related careers by providing a proven mix of pre-college academic, hands-on experience, and mentoring opportunities for K-12 students. This work is vital to the continued growth of Oregon’s innovation-led economy and efforts to ensure that all Oregonians can share in the state’s growing prosperity.

 

News Releases
April 9, 2015

I recently met an amazing set of entrepreneurs who are tackling a dizzying array of challenges: developing systems to allow impoverished families in poor countries to heat and pressurize water for bathing, cooking, and cleaning; creating a lawnmower-type machine that harvests and converts crops directly into biomass pellets for fuel; and inventing improved medical devices like chest tubes and spinal probes to save time, healthcare costs, and patient suffering.

News Releases
April 8, 2015

This week at the Global Sankalp Summit in New Delhi, India, The Lemelson Foundation will preview findings from a study we commissioned called “Catalyzing Capital for Invention: Spotlight on India.” The study was conducted by the advisory firm Enclude and provides first-of-its kind insight into how investors can grow India’s promising ecosystem of early stage, invention-based companies committed to achieving positive social impact.

News Releases
April 4, 2015

As the Global Sankalp Summit 2015 changes gears with a move to New Delhi this year with a focus on furthering an inclusive innovation economy. Innovation is at the heart of India’s resurgence as the fastest-growing economy of the world and India’s unique differentiation in the global innovation landscape is because its innovations work at scale and are frugal.

Continuing its partnership with The Lemelson Foundation and Villgro, the Summit will bring a special focus on Impact Inventing and the support that invention-based enterprises need to scale.  The Lemelson Foundation and Villgro have long been working together on what is called “the invention pathway” – a process that helps transform nascent ideas into tangible, life-improving products, and successful industries that stimulate the economy. The Foundation inspires, educates and incubates inventors all over the world, while Villgro works with entrepreneurs in India to help build impactful for-profit businesses. Together, the two organizations believe that the world’s biggest problems need lasting, sustainable solutions.

News Releases
January 6, 2015

2015 is an important year for The Lemelson Foundation. It has been 20 years since our founders, the prolific inventor Jerome Lemelson and his wife Dorothy, mapped out their vision for a world where inventors and their inventions improve lives. As we pause to reflect on two decades of philanthropic work, we have much to celebrate and even more to learn. Over the next year we intend to mark our 20th anniversary with a mix of big ideas, shared learnings, and inspiring stories about the incredible work of our grantees. We also want to show how Jerome and Dorothy’s original vision together with the ongoing vision of the Lemelson family continues to shape the future of invention and inspire the work of the Foundation and our partners.

News Releases
December 23, 2014

The Lemelson Foundation seeks a strategic, results-oriented leader for a new Deputy Director role. The Deputy Director will be an integral part of the close-knit leadership team, including the CFAO and Executive Director, providing support and direction on issues that cut across the Foundation’s priorities and are of high importance to the overall strategy.

News Releases
November 24, 2014

The Foundation is seeking a strategic Program Officer that believes in improving lives through invention and has a genuine interest in contributing to a culture of collaboration, learning, and innovation. The ideal candidate is passionate, curious, and wholly dedicated to creating scaled impact on the lives of the most vulnerable worldwide. Moreover, s/he is committed to sustainable development in alignment with the Foundation's priority to support businesses that consider both their environmental and social impact.

News Releases
November 4, 2014

The Foundation is seeking a strategic Program Officer that believes in improving lives through invention and has a genuine interest in contributing to a culture of collaboration, learning, and innovation. The ideal candidate is passionate, curious, and wholly dedicated to creating scaled impact on the lives of the most vulnerable worldwide. Moreover, s/he is committed to sustainable development in alignment with the Foundation's priority to support businesses that consider both their environmental and social impact.

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