Meet Eric Payne! Eric is the Senior Licensing Executive at the National Renewable Energy Laboratory and one of the licensing contacts on the Energy Innovation Portal. When Eric is not biking one of Colorado’s many mountains, you can find him negotiating licensing deals at the National Renewable Energy Laboratory.
After studying microbiology, Eric began his career in academic licensing as a student intern at the Purdue University Office of Technology Commercialization and has since been pursuing his passion for technology transfer. Although his background fuels a particular interest in the advanced biofuels industry, Eric appreciates the unique research capabilities and facilities of the National Laboratories calling them "a gem of the U.S. research system."
Part of Eric's passion stems from the proven track record of the DOE labs in leveraging private-public investments to further develop nascent technology markets through early collaboration in high-risk research areas. "Only through hindsight can one appreciate the tremendous impact this at-risk research investment has had on now thriving industries such as semiconductors, biotechnology, photovoltaics, biofuels and wind," Eric explains.
One thing Eric keeps in mind everyday is, "licensing is a balancing act that requires carefully managing internal/external expectations while also not losing site of the need to transfer technologies to commercial partners who ultimately sell products."