Brief Description:
We are preparing a multi-day conference and workshop in Monastir, Tunisia, which will bring together students, faculty, business leaders, and regional and U.S. experts to discuss entrepreneurship, economic development, and technology innovation, transfer and commercialization. The purpose of the UTMP project is to enhance incountry capacity in Tunisia and Morocco to bring new technologies to the local and global markets by building individual and institutional capacity to catalyze the development and commercialization of those new technologies that truly address economic and market needs.

The first two days of the event combine keynote lectures, testimonials, roundtable discussions, and hands-on sessions; participation during the first two days should reach about 300 participants, mostly first and second year engineering students. The last two days will focus on lectures and short courses on entrepreneurship and related training, culminating in design and business competitions; participation during these two days will be limited to a selection of engineering students and early-career faculty from Tunisia and Morocco.

As to content, keynote lectures will lay a technical foundation for some of the breakout sessions while testimonials will be based on success stories that involve enterprise creation to serve as inspiration and knowledge sharing. The round tables will bring together entrepreneurs, business people and academicians to initiate conversations between the groups; possible topics include entrepreneurship and technology-driven company creation, issues of financing a start-up and the American model. Hands-on sessions will be run by business and engineering faculty and target early-career faculty and engineering students; possible topics include: the engineer's role in innovation and in economic development, and ingredients for creative thinking and innovation. Participants will include engineering students (a total of 270 junior and senior students from Tunisian engineering schools, and 20 engineering students from Marrakesh, Morocco) and early career faculty from Morocco and Tunisia, in addition to instructors/experts from the U.S., Morocco and Tunisia.

The US-Tunisia-Morocco Partnership for the Promotion of Technology Innovation and Commercialization Strategies in Engineering Research and Education

1) Identify specific strategies designed to catalyze innovation and creativity in engineering curricula in Tunisia and Morocco. Facilitator-led discussions will allow participants to share examples and best practices and brainstorm new ideas.

2) Shape a new type of Tunisian and Moroccan engineer who possesses entrepreneurial skills, a knowledge of new product development processes, and a unique perspective on and connection to the private sector.

3) Provide a venue to foster connections and build mutual understanding between universities and the private sector.

4) Build researcher capacity to create and develop innovative ideas and direct studies towards outcomes with market potential.

1) Lectures on research successes, creativity, innovation and entrepreneurship

2) Roundtable of students, engineering business leaders, investors, university faculty and experts

3) Hands-on activities on selected technical topics, followed by team deliberations and team presentations

4) Short courses and presentations on topics such as investing in Tunisia and Morocco, the process of patenting, financing a start-up

5) Mentorship and coaching for students participating in the business competition

Other Workshop Information

All the activities related to NATEG DAYS 2012 will take place at Palais des Sciences de Monastir.

Student lodging will be at the Hotel Monastir Centre.

Faculty lodging will be at the TBA.

For more information on Monastir, please view this informational video.

Program Information

    -Tentative Agenda.
    -Workshop Flyer.
    -Our Press Release.

USTM In the News:
    -TAP Article
    -Tunisia Live Article
    -La Presse Article