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Working Collaboratively Among Universities: A Dense Network Approach

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2012 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition


San Antonio, Texas

Publication Date

June 10, 2012

Start Date

June 10, 2012

End Date

June 13, 2012



Conference Session

National and Multi-university Initiatives

Tagged Division

Entrepreneurship & Engineering Innovation

Page Count


Page Numbers

25.1499.1 - 25.1499.12



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Paper Authors


Cynthia C. Fry Baylor University

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Cynthia C. Fry is a Senior Lecturer of computer science and Assistant Dean of the School of Engineering and Computer Science, Baylor University.

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Sridhar S. Condoor Saint Louis University

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Sridhar Condoor is a professor in the Aerospace and Mechanical Engineering Department. He is also the Program Director for Mechanical Engineering, a KEEN fellow, a Coleman Fellow, and the Editor of the Journal of Engineering Entrepreneurship. Condoor teaches sustainability, product design, and entrepreneurship. His research interests are in the areas of design theory and methodology, technology entrepreneurship, and sustainability. He is spearheading Technology Entrepreneurship education at SLU via Innovation to Product
(I2P), iChallenge, and entrepreneurship competitions and funded research. He is the Principal Investigator for the KEEN EntrepreneurshipProgram Development Grants to foster the spirit of innovation in all engineering students.Condoor authored several books. The titles include Innovative Conceptual Design, Engineering Statics, and Modeling with ProEngineer. He published several technical papers on topics focused on conceptual design, design principles, cognitive science as applied to design, and design education. VayuWind, a hubless wind turbine for urban environments, is one of his inventions. VayuWind deploys airfoils parallel to the rotational axis in such a way that, unlike other windmills, it rotates around a ring frame, leaving the central portion open for other uses. This enables VayuWind to extract wind power using existing structures such as commercial buildings and skywalks with minimal noise pollution.

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Timothy J. Kriewall Kern Family Foundation

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Timothy J. Kriewall leads the Kern Entrepreneurship Education Network (KEEN) Program at the Kern Family Foundation located in Waukesha, Wis. Prior to this role, he served as President of Wisconsin Lutheran College in Milwaukee, a position he held for five years. He began his career at Bell Telephone Laboratories where, with a colleague, he helped develop one of the world’s first computer-aided circuit board layout programs deploying interactive computer graphics. Subsequently, he served in various capacities at 3M and Medtronic corporations, focusing on the invention and commercialization of innovative medical devices. Among the products Kriewall helped commercialize were the first cochlear implant to receive FDA approval and a patented state-of-the-art heart-lung machine based on controller-area-network logic. Kriewall also served as a professor in the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology at the University of Michigan Medical School for eight years, earning the rank of Associate Professor, focusing his research in perinatal medicine to quantitatively understand the forces of labor and delivery on the newborn. He has been in his present position since July, 2008. He is a life member of IEEE, a member of ASEE, and a Fellow in the American Institute of Medical and Biological Engineers.

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Christopher Kitts Santa Clara University

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Christopher Kitts is the Robert W. Peters Professor in mechanical engineering at Santa Clara University where he serves as Director of the Robotic Systems Laboratory. Kitts runs an aggressive field robotics program focused on the the design and operational control of robotic systems ranging from underwater robots to spacecraft. As part of this activity, Kitts serves as the Mission Operations Director for a series of NASA spacecraft, as an affiliate researcher at the Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute, and as a KEEN Fellow for Santa Clara's program in undergraduate innovation and entrepreneurship education. Kitts' previous experience includes service as a satellite constellation mission controller in the U.S. Air Force, as a technical contractor for NASA Ames Research Center, and as a DoD Research Fellow at the U.S. Philips Laboratory. He holds degrees from Princeton University, the University of Colorado, and Stanford University.

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Working Collaboratively Among Universities – a Dense Network ApproachIn “To Change the World: The Irony, Tragedy, and Possibility of Christianity in the Late ModernWorld,” author James Davison Hunter espouses the idea that the engine for driving change invirtually any context is in dense networks. According to Hunter, a dense network is defined as amechanism for change. A dense network includes a handful of key components including apassionate focus, diverse skills and competencies related to the passionate focus, a robustoutreach network, the desire to disrupt unneeded orthodoxies in core institutions, andinspirational leadership.In the past year this paradigm of collaboration has been applied in the academy in two specificinstances. Schools from the Kern Entrepreneurship Education Network (KEEN) have formedtwo such networks, each with the intention of accelerating growth in the area of promoting anentrepreneurial mindset among all engineering students. One network, which has members fromsix different universities, was formed to promote and spread innovative approaches toentrepreneurial education. The other network, comprised of four other universities, will workcollaboratively to create engineering graduates who are world changes and who direct projectsthat change the world.This paper will document the design, development, and early implementation of these two densenetworks, including the challenges faced throughout these phases, lessons learned, and earlyassessment results.

Fry, C. C., & Condoor, S. S., & Kriewall, T. J., & Kitts, C. (2012, June), Working Collaboratively Among Universities: A Dense Network Approach Paper presented at 2012 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, San Antonio, Texas. 10.18260/1-2--22256

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