Haas Newsroom

Scientific American names two professors at UC Berkeley as among year's top 50 innovators

Berkeley, November 13, 2003 - Two professors at the University of California, Berkeley, are among the top 50 innovators of 2003 chosen by Scientific American magazine.

The magazine's December issue contains its second annual salute to the Scientific American 50 - individuals, teams and organizations whose accomplishments in research, business or policymaking during the past year demonstrated outstanding technological leadership.

Henry Chesbrough, a visiting assistant professor at UC Berkeley's Haas School of Business, who also serves as executive director of the campus's Center for Technology Strategy and Management, and David Culler, UC Berkeley professor of computer science in the College of Engineering and former director of the Intel Research Berkeley laboratory, are profiled in the December issue.

Chesbrough, while working for disk-drive maker Quantum in the 1980s, the magazine says, "began to wonder why large corporations such as IBM and AT&T couldn't seem to reap the market benefits of the advanced technology they created."

A senior product marketing executive for almost a decade for Plus Development Corp., a subsidiary of data storage systems manufacturer Quantum Corp., Chesbrough concluded that these corporations were too insular in their research focus, while their businesses only used concepts conceived in-house.

The magazine notes that in his book, "Open Innovation: The New Imperative for Creating and Profiting from Technology," (Harvard Business School Press, 2003), Chesbrough proposed a new model of industrial research and development to eliminate the traditional boundaries between businesses, universities, start-ups and sources of innovation.

Chesbrough earned his Ph.D. from the Haas School in 1997.

Culler is honored by Scientific American for his innovative work on wireless sensor networks for military and environmental applications.

He has led research on the TinyOS operating system that allows tiny, cheap sensor motes to communicate with one another. These motes are being used to help biologists monitor petrel seabirds on a remote island off the coast of Maine and study the micro-climate within a redwood grove.

Wireless sensor networks are also being developed to track local stresses on the Golden Gate Bridge, to track vehicles that enter restricted areas or battlefields and to monitor rescue operations of firefighters.

Culler plays a leading role in several major research initiatives on network computing, including the recent launch of a global testbed known as PlanetLab. The testbed establishes an open, scalable network that allows researchers to develop new Internet services that operate simultaneously on multiple computers spread over a wide geographic range rather than on a single Web site. Such a system could lead to significantly faster downloads and more secure storage systems.

Culler earned his Ph.D. in computer science in 1989 from Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

Contact: Ute Frey
Haas School of Business
(510) 642-0342, frey@haas.berkeley.edu

Teresa Moore
College of Engineering
(510) 643-6803, tcmoore@coe.berkeley.edu