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University of Michigan Innovation Partnerships
University of Michigan Innovation Partnerships

National Security Innovation Network (NSIN) Hires New Program Director


The National Security Innovation Network (NSIN), a Department of Defense (DoD) collaboration with the University of Michigan Office of the Vice President for Research, is pleased to announce Alison Beatty as its new U-M Program Director. Beatty will connect U-M faculty, students and startups to the wealth of national security resources and opportunities available to them at the DoD. Not only will companies that come through these programs build technology that will find numerous customers in national security, but also students and startups will bring fresh, inclusive talent and skill sets to government organizations to solve problems in new and innovative ways.

“Whether you are a student, researcher, professor, or entrepreneur, NSIN is here to connect innovators and commercial companies with dual-use venture opportunities in the defense industry,” said Beatty.

Before joining NSIN, Beatty worked at Ann Arbor SPARK to connect startups to funding opportunities with business partners, venture capital, and testing facilities. At SPARK, she also worked closely with NSIN and its network to connect startups to funding available in the defense industry, both with Michigan-based partners and national opportunities.

Prior to SPARK, Beatty received her doctorate in Public Policy and Political Science from U-M and her bachelor’s degree in International Political Economy from the University of Texas at Dallas.

In 2021, U-M became the 14th university to partner with NSIN, joining universities like UC Berkeley and others, and was the second university in the Great Lakes region. This national collaboration has focused on strengthening the university’s efforts to partner with local industry to solve national security issues and create economic opportunity.

Innovation Partnerships, a unit based in the Office of the Vice President for Research, will work closely with Beatty and the NSIN team to facilitate connections within the innovation ecosystem to create opportunities for U-M researchers to collaboratively work on and solve national security problems. Solutions will be fostered through coursework, exposure to university resources and expertise, and the creation of ventures.

The National Security Innovation Network’s mission is to “build networks of innovators that generate new solutions to national security problems.” National Security Innovation Network is headquartered in Arlington, Va., and has regional offices in 21 commercial innovation hubs throughout the United States. Through its headquarters, regional hubs and embedded university partnerships, National Security Innovation Network builds a national network of innovators and delivers programming that solves real-world, Department of Defense problems through collaborative partnerships with nontraditional problem solvers within the academic and early-stage venture communities.

Innovation Partnerships, a unit based in the Office of the Vice President for Research, is the primary gateway for U-M researchers seeking to increase the impact of their work by connecting with the private sector. Innovation Partnerships’ team of experts help amplify the impact of U-M research through corporate-sponsored research collaborations, licensing and intellectual property strategies, and connections with business mentors, entrepreneurs, and investors to support startup company formation.