Program Implementation | Application Submission Procedure
Selection Criteria | Judging Criteria
The iMatSci Innovator Showcase provides a platform for technology leaders at universities, research labs and start-up companies to demonstrate the practical applications of innovative, materials-based technologies. The goal of this program is to convene innovators, industry leaders and investors in one location to spur collaboration that accelerates the adoption of new materials technologies for real-world applications.
iMatSci is designed to showcase technologies that have not yet been productized but where there is a working prototype or evidence of a repeatable process. The entities behind these innovations will generally be early stage and pre-revenue; however iMatSci will also consider showcasing innovative technologies that are emerging from an existing corporate entity.
Innovators should submit an application, including a brief product pitch and URL for viewing a 2-3 minute video (optional, but highly recommended), through the iMatSci Application Submission Portal. Videos should be high-quality, and should suggest how or why the innovation is unique to the market. Samples of effective videos that have been used at iMatSci in the past can be viewed below.
Applications will be reviewed based on the Selection Criteria below, and finalists will be notified of the status of their submission in early-September. Each of the selected innovators will be provided with space in The Hub, including one 6-ft table, two chairs and electricity at no charge. These finalists will present their technologies using various forms of media such as videos, tabletop demonstrations and prototypes. Demonstrations will be judged based on the Judging Criteria below.
iMatSci will be held on Monday and Tuesday, November 27-28, 2017, at the Hynes Convention Center.
Application Submission Procedure
All applications must be submitted through the iMatSci Application Submission Portal, which will be open from June 1 to September 1, 2017. Applications may be updated in the system until the submission deadline.
Applicants need NOT be MRS Members, however, an MRS account must be used to login to the site. If you do not have a username and password, create a free MRS account today.
For technical difficulties or other submission issues, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
In selecting innovators to demonstrate their technologies at the 2017 MRS Fall Meeting, the Review Committee will review the videos for evidence of:
- Demonstration: A physical demonstration is the best form of visual to show the prototype performance, data, etc. Be sure the video shows how the material or device performs in attributes of interest for the commercial product area of interest. The most effective demos avoid formal PowerPoints and traditional research posters, but effectively summarize scientific data.
- Stage of Development: Be honest about your assessment of where your innovation is in its development; i.e., is it still science, are lab results repeatable, has a prototype product been developed, or have samples been provided to an industry contact for evaluation? Indicate your goals and technical/commercial/financial path forward—include timing and what resources are available vs. needed. This is a great opportunity to form a partnership.
- Uniqueness: Without using technical jargon, describe how this innovation is unique or better than what is already available. Does it add a new feature or effect, or does it significantly lower the cost for an existing process or technology?
- Market Need: Show how this is of value and include who that person/organization is. No detailed market analysis is needed for this early stage. However, it should be readily evident to the Reviewer that this would be worthwhile to develop further. For example, the benefits are visible in the areas of medicine, energy, sustainability, etc.
- Strength of IP Protection: Where applicable, be sure to address IP ownership, patent status, licensing availability, etc. Be sure to include your ideas on how you plan to take this to market—are you looking for sponsored research money, joint development agreement, simple licensing, etc.—or if there are existing partners that have invested or have a stake in the IP.
Technologies must be mature enough to clearly demonstrate their value proposition to the layperson. Demonstrations will be judged on-site based on the following criteria:
- Clarity: Is the exhibit/demo easy to understand?
- Presentation: Do the individuals present the demo well? Do they understand the technology and its potential applications? Bring samples, pictures and/or video, and a one-page summary showing the innovation or technology.
- Value Proposition: Is there a clear value proposition for potential end-use? Is it easy to envision this technology being profitable?
- Impact: Does the technology have potential for a large impact? If successful, will the technology change lives, or is it simply something nice to have?
- Scalability: Can this technology easily scale to commercial volumes?
The content of submitted applications is the sole responsibility of the innovators. MRS is not responsible for any liability, financial or otherwise, associated with application content, innovation prototypes, or intellectual property rights. With regard to confidential or proprietary information, innovators are advised that MRS Meetings and iMatSci demonstrations are fully open and accessible to all interested registrants, including the media and general public.