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Not your typical Innovation Program

  • Fall 2024 Innovation Action Workshop
    Fall 2024 Innovation Action Workshop
    Mon, Sep 30
    Sep 30, 2024, 8:30 AM PDT – Oct 02, 2024, 8:00 PM PDT
    SRI International Headquarters, 333 Ravenswood Ave, Menlo Park, CA 94025
    Sep 30, 2024, 8:30 AM PDT – Oct 02, 2024, 8:00 PM PDT
    SRI International Headquarters, 333 Ravenswood Ave, Menlo Park, CA 94025
    Experience a groundbreaking 3 day immersive program where you'll engage with cutting-edge technology, world-renowned speakers, and hands-on sessions led by innovation specialists. Acquire the skills to transform strategy into an actionable roadmap for innovation.

Due to the hands-on nature of these programs, space is limited.


Corporate innovation executives know that digital transformation is driving an ever-increasing pace of technological change. Business leaders need to execute innovation strategies today, in a world where the end target seems to be constantly shifting. In this environment, an innovation leader’s ability to effectively communicate innovation strategy to engage and align internal stakeholders has never been more important - or challenging.

"The Innovation Action Workshop is where executives come to move from analysis and incrementalism to taking action - with confidence!"

- Sandra Miller

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Your learnings at the Workshop


Assess emerging technologies like AI, blockchain, and synthetic biology to identify strategic threats and opportunities



Establish frameworks to measure and improve environmental sustainability



Explore business model innovations from services embedding to circular product flows that align with shifting consumer expectations



Evaluate which partnerships offer the greatest likelihood of realizing innovation leaps


Tools from the Innovation Action Workshop


Templates to take action on

strategies learned during the Workshop


An Innovation GPS tool that improves communications with stakeholders

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You'll identify at least one concept to 10X your innovation strategy


Key Takeaways Guide of workshops, panels & discussions

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A network of innovation peers to support your innovation journey


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Sandra Miller
  • LinkedIn

Sandra Miller is CEO of Foundry 415 Innovation Group, a premier innovation hub at the epicenter of San Francisco’s tech ecosystem. Foundry 415 provides the connections, services, and community high quality tech startups and innovation ecosystem players need to succeed. Foundry 415 provides Corporate Innovation Services, customized startup acceleration programs and executive education services. Sandra speaks to multinational corporations, governments, entrepreneurs, investors and universities on myriad aspects of technology innovation and entrepreneurship. She brings a grounded and practical Silicon Valley perspective to exploring the promise and potential perils of technology innovation and disruption in our increasingly digital world, providing practical examples for how innovation impacts the way we live, learn and work – today, and in the future. Sandra is a member of the University of California President's Entrepreneurship Network Council. Sandra co-founded Stanford University’s Biodesign Program and led Accenture Venture’s Open Innovation initiatives with Silicon Valley’s top accelerators. She was the first Managing Director of the Singularity University startup accelerator and is emeritus Chair of Singularity’s Entrepreneurship Track. Sandra co-founded the Kauffman Foundation’s Labs for Enterprise Creation accelerator and was Managing Director of The Angels’ Forum (now Mighty Capital), one of Silicon Valley’s leading angel investor groups. An Advisor to post seed-stage and venture capital-backed startups, Sandra continues to be in awe of the transformations that occur in startup founders throughout their entrepreneurial journeys. She has nearly 20 years of experience advising and educating more than 1,000 entrepreneurs and startups in many industry sectors as they develop technologies such as artificial intelligence, robotics, synthetic biology, virtual reality and Internet of Things. Sandra is based in Silicon Valley and most enjoys rambling coastside or amongst redwood trees.

Chris Cowart
  • LinkedIn

Chris Cowart serves as the managing director for the Nomura-SRI Innovation Center (NSIC) and is responsible for its operations, creating program content, forming partnerships and working with the member companies. Cowart has been a user experience, design and product executive over the course of his career. He has worked across brands, innovation consulting and venture communities for more than 25 years. Prior to SRI International, Cowart was the Chief Innovation & Strategy Officer at Treasure8, a food tech company leading a Resource Revolution® to bring disease-fighting, sustainable nutrition to a rapidly growing planet. He has also been a Venture Partner at Montage Ventures for 2 funds — in addition to his role at Treasure8 — focused on disrupting retail, health & wellness, and consumer financial services. A formative part of his work experience includes 14 years at design and innovation consulting firm, IDEO. Here Cowart pioneered the human factors and user research disciplines in the design industry and launched many ‘first of their categories’ products for the company. He fluidly spans the disciplines of user-centered design, product, partnerships and business, and his continuous learning approach has allowed him to add new facets such as venture capital and future forecasting. As a thought leader on the future of sports and the future of medicine, Chris’ speaking appearances and publications focus on the leading edge of those fields. He is an engaging speaker, facilitator and thought leader who leverages design and strategic thinking to provoke teams and industries to accelerate change through innovation.

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SRI Robotics Lab

Participants of the Innovation Action Workshop will have a once in a lifetime opportunity to tour the SRI Robotics Lab

SRI Robotics solutions have enabled first-of-a-kind innovations in robotics, including Yamaha’s Motobot, minimally invasive telerobotic surgical systems, autonomous fruit harvesting and remotely operated manipulation systems for mining and explosive render-safe.   SRI continues to push the envelope and identify opportunities where robots can bring value.  Today, SRI Robotics is working on innovative solutions to improve the competitiveness of our customers’ robotic products, including artificial muscle actuators, twisted pair transmissions in powered clothing to enhance mobility and aid in the recovery from injury, light and efficient electro-adhesive brakes that enable the next generation of robotic arms and hands, systems to conduct hazardous mining operations or remote repair of satellites in space, lightweight infinity variable transmissions and AI–mediated robotic surgery to provide timely treatment to people injured in remote locations.​ In pharmaceutical manufacturing, clean rooms are designed to minimize the risk of contamination from microorganisms, biomolecules, or anything else that might affect the safety and efficacy of the final product. These rooms are precisely controlled, but any time a person enters one to repair, maintain, or perform other tasks that are costly to automate, they potentially disrupt the sterile environment. SRI’s XRGo robotic telemanipulation software could help people perform these tasks from a distance, protecting pharmaceuticals from contamination. XRGo allows operators to remotely control the movements of a robotic arm to, for example, adjust misaligned test tubes, or perform routine maintenance, without ever needing to enter the room.


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Aaron Frank

Facebook shifts towards a 'metaverse' focus, while Epic Games pledges a $1 billion fund for its development. But what exactly is the 'metaverse'? Join Aaron Frank in this session as he unpacks its core concepts, technologies, and implications. Key tech components include augmented and virtual reality, game engines, geospatial mapping (AR Cloud), virtual world platforms, and decentralized systems like blockchain, NFTs, and web3. The Metaverse, also known as the 'Spatial Web', revolutionizes our online experience. Soon, we'll inhabit avatars in 2D and 3D spaces for work, play, shopping, and socializing. Cultural events are already thriving in these digital realms. Moreover, the metaverse's growth is driving new virtual economies, reshaping how brands interact with consumers, and prompting businesses to rethink digital strategies. With a decade of experience in VR tech, Aaron Frank has been at the forefront of augmented and virtual environments. His recent clients include Twitter, Coca-Cola, and Mclaren Automotive.

Sally Dominguez

Join Sally Dominguez in an insightful workshop focused on the vital concept of complete, circular systems encompassing services, products, and environments. In today's uncertain landscape, circular service systems play a pivotal role in driving growth. By fostering a secure and inspiring community, they encourage customers to extend invitations to like-minded individuals, creating a positive cycle of engagement. Embracing the question, "What more can we do?" these systems continually add value, cultivating loyalty in return. With a wealth of experience in circular systems spanning product design, energy looping, and upcycling, Sally is well-equipped to co-create sustainable, effective solutions that benefit both organizations and consumers. Drawing from her expertise in Purpose work and Moonshot Thinking, refined through collaborations with esteemed companies like SONY Corporation, Honeywell, Abbott, and others, combined with her groundbreaking work as an inventor in cutting-edge materials and energy innovation, Sally ignites large-scale, impactful thinking. This innovative approach is then fine-tuned through the collective expertise of workshop participants, resulting in actionable, circular systems.

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Tiffany Vora

For 4 billion years, life has been constantly innovating here on Earth. What can we learn from how biology innovates, and from the scientists and thinkers who have investigated the living world? Blending history with tomorrow’s cutting-edge biotech advances, this session empowers participants to leverage evolution’s methods to drive innovation in any industry. In this workshop, participants will: ● Explore the foundations of evolutionary theory and examples of “biological innovation” in today’s world, including the pandemic, with connections to future evolution (e.g. via CRISPR) ● Encounter case studies of the technologies and ways of thinking employed by evolutionary scientists ● Extract learnings from how the natural world innovates and apply them to a hypothetical scenario ● Formulate an “evolutionary innovation” action plan with goals for innovation and leadership in business and society. By focusing on learning from the natural world, this session is ideal for professionals who are looking to expand their insights and their innovation journeys beyond the traditional business realm.

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Jody Medich

We are on the precipice of a socio-cultural revolution so significant it will deliver the impact of all previous phases of the Industrial Revolution combined. It will more likely be referred to as the Autonomous Revolution because it will usher in an era of real-time Human and AI collaboration that will increase productivity along all metrics: efficiency, human ingenuity, and new capabilities. It is difficult to comprehend its potential impact from today’s vantage point in the “mainframe” era of AI: it’s costly, centralized, and requires a large team of specially trained technicians, limiting its power to the solving of critical corporate, institutional, and global problems on a grand scale. But the seeds for the disruptive democratization of AI and Autonomy are already present. Today’s computing is distributed, ubiquitous, smaller, faster, multi-sensory, and operates on natural language. All that is lacking is a shift in the human-machine interface driven by a new mental model such as the PC brought to the mainframe for these technologies to become the everyday tools used around the globe for everything from manufacturing to children’s entertainment. Let’s talk about what that will be.

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Jonathan Knowles

Join us for an inspiring interview session featuring three game-changing innovators who are reshaping the future landscape of their industries. Against the backdrop of rapid technological advancement and evolving market dynamics, these visionary leaders will share their insights, experiences, and strategies for navigating the path forward. Our panelists will discuss their journey towards innovation, the challenges they've encountered, and the opportunities they've seized along the way. From disruptive startups to established industry players, their stories will offer valuable lessons and inspiration for those embarking on their own innovation journeys. Whether you're seeking to revolutionize your business model, embrace emerging technologies, or foster a culture of innovation within your organization, this session promises to ignite your imagination and empower you to shape the future.

More speakers announced SOON!


Schedule Preview

Day 1

Theme: Innovation GPS
During Day 1 of the workshop, you will delve into the pivotal theme that innovation thrives on engagement throughout the organization. Unlocking alignment behind ambitious visions demands adept navigation through intricate internal landscapes. Day 1 workshops will introduce the Innovation GPS tool which will provide you with a robust framework to bolster your success. Through interactive sessions, you will learn to skillfully communicate with stakeholders, effectively activating and nurturing innovation ecosystems within your organization. The Innovation Action Workshop equips you to navigate complexities, fostering a culture where bold innovation can flourish and drive sustained growth.

Day 1 Highlight:
4th Revolution with Jody Medich
Industry 4.0: The Era of Humans + AI Collaboration

Day 2

Theme: Inspiration
On Day 2, the workshop focuses on the crucial topic of innovation inspiration. We recognize that while innovation strategies provide a roadmap, true transformation occurs when inspiration ignites action. Through engaging discussions and hands-on activities, you will explore diverse sources of inspiration, from emerging technologies to customer insights and organizational culture. By tapping into these wellsprings of creativity, the Innovation Action Network gives you the insights and motivation needed to turn your organization’s innovation strategies into tangible actions. The day's sessions will empower you to infuse your teams with passion and purpose, fostering a dynamic environment where innovative ideas thrive and translate into real-world impact.

Day 2 Highlight:
SRI Robotics Lab Tour

Day 3

Theme: Take Action
The workshop culminates on Day 3 with a deep dive on taking decisive action to implement innovation strategies. With a firm foundation established over the preceding days, you will participate in practical exercises and collaborative discussions aimed at translating insights into concrete steps. Emphasis will be placed on crafting actionable plans tailored to your organization's unique context and challenges. Through guided exercises, you will refine your approach to leading innovation initiatives, identifying key stakeholders, allocating resources effectively, and establishing metrics for success. The program will culminate with a roadmap for immediate implementation, empowering you to return to your company equipped with the tools needed to kickstart innovation. The first day back at work will be characterized by a sense of purpose and clarity, as you leverage newfound knowledge and skills to drive meaningful change within your organization.

Day 3 Highlight:
Purpose-based moonshot thinking with impactful and deliverable results


Sally Dominguez


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SRI Conference Center

SRI International Headquarters

333 Ravenswood
Menlo Park, CA 94025
SRI Robotics Lab
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