12 March 2015
As society confronts mounting challenges locally and globally, we must look for innovative solutions. That’s where invention comes in. Inventors observe problems and focus on creating new products and services that offer a better quality of life. To highlight the importance of invention and cultivate a network of inventors, the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) and The Lemelson Foundation have created the AAAS-Lemelson Invention Ambassadors Program.
The program selected its inaugural class in 2014 with seven Invention Ambassadors. Now, the program is calling for applications to select its 2015 class. They will be accepting applications until April 20, 2015.
Inventors from all disciplines are invited to apply for the program. Those selected as Invention Ambassadors will give public talks and serve on panels to present their stories as inventors and promote the role of invention in the US.
Program goals are to:
- Celebrate and highlight the importance of invention and inventors.
- Increase societies’ understanding of the critical role of invention in improving our quality of life.
- Get more people excited about supporting or becoming inventors.
- Help cultivate a new and diverse generation of inventors.
- Increase global understanding of the role of invention, inventors and invention education and the need for a robust invention ecosystem in building economies and fostering innovation.
- Heighten awareness of invention’s vital role in addressing the global challenges of our time.
- Celebrate inventors who insist on improving and sustaining our earth’s environment.
Beyond this, we strive to create a community; the inaugural Ambassadors have bonded and shared information, time, thoughts and experiences with each other.
AAAS and The Lemelson Foundation both have a history of invention. AAAS publishes Science Magazine, which was started by one of the most prolific inventors in the world: Thomas Edison. Dr. Jerome Lemelson, the founder of The Lemelson Foundation, held over 600 patents in various types of technologies, including industrial robots, fax machines, and information storage systems. The idea for the Invention Ambassadors Program was proposed by Dr. Alexander Nicholas a Program Officer for The Lemelson Foundation who manages a portion of the Foundation’s education and technology dissemination grants. The Executive Director of The Lemelson Foundation, Dr. Carol Dahl, whose background is in discovery sciences, innovation programs, and global health, has supported the efforts and spoken at several Invention Ambassador events.
For 2015, we hope to draw additional extraordinary applicants and select a group of Invention Ambassadors who will bond and deepen their relationship and collaboration with the inaugural class. We would like to build on last year’s efforts to create future prospects fostering further dialog about the issues surrounding invention and its ecosystem, as well as connecting a community of first inaugural class and future “Invention Ambassadors.”