Last month the Department of Health and Human Services received nearly 100 applications for its new Innovation Fellows Program.  While the Innovations Team and project leads review those applications and select candidates, there is another exciting and important component of the HHS Innovation Fellows Program that we would like to share with you: the Innovation Fellows Technical Advisors.

The Innovation Fellows Technical Advisors consist of eleven individuals from varying backgrounds and experiences who will be on hand to provide each of the HHS Innovations Fellows with unique perspectives, advice and support for each of their assigned projects.  HHS will provide Host and External Innovation Fellows the opportunity to receive advice, participate in roundtable discussions, and have direct access to a team of entrepreneurs, innovation experts, industry professionals and venture capitalists to support the Host Innovation projects.  This aims to be an ongoing advisory relationship to help Fellows enhance their understanding of the project and address any perceived weaknesses as they move towards a solution.

The aim of the HHS Innovations Fellows program is to bring external ideas and expertise to HHS’s own innovation process and rapidly create, develop, engage and accelerate innovation.  To tackle some of the nation’s largest health care problems, the HHS Innovation Fellows program is looking outside government for solutions. While starting with a handful of Fellows to tackle four critical health problems is a good start, we recognize that in order for the Fellows to be successful, they will need support, and that’s where the Technical Advisors step in.

The Technical Advisors have a diverse background, ranging from business to technology to health care but what they all have in common is a record of entrepreneurial thinking and success.  Their advice and guidance are critical and will help the Innovations Fellows as they tackle a wide range of challenges and opportunities.    It is our aim that the Innovation Technical Advisor-Fellow relationship will provide practical, real world experience in dealing with the formation and growth of a new venture or solving complex problems in an innovative way.

The eleven Technical Advisors are:

Jim Dougherty – With almost 30 years of diverse operating experiences as senior management in both IT and information services companies. Jim recently co-founded Madaket, a startup Healthcare IT company based in Boston. Prior to founding Madaket, as an Operating Partner with Great Hill Partners, he worked with seven portfolio companies on their boards of directors, advisor to the CEOs, and in one case as interim CEO.

Matthew Eyring, M.B.A. – Is the managing partner of Innosight, where he also leads the healthcare and emerging markets practices. Additionally, he has worked with Fortune 500 companies in industries such as medical devices, pharmaceuticals, insurance, dental care, and consumer health.

Walter Jin – Is the Chief Investment Officer of The Innovation Institute, a service provider of business solutions to non-profit hospital health systems that improves quality and cost efficiency through growth and innovation.  Mr. Jin manages all investment activities related to the Innovation Growth Fund, the Innovation Incubator Lab and M&A Business Development.

Mohit Kaushal, M.D., M.B.A. – Is Executive Vice President of Business Development and Chief Strategy Officer of the West Wireless Health Institute. As a member of the executive leadership team, he is identifying and pursuing business development opportunities that will advance the Institute’s mission of lowering health care costs.

Jennifer Kurkoski, Ph.D. - Directs Google’s People & Innovation Lab (PiLab). Part of Google’s People Operations (a.k.a., Human Resources) department, PiLab members conduct innovative research aimed at transforming organizational practice within Google and beyond. Her work has been featured in the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal, and Fast Company magazine.

Karim R. Lakhani, Ph.D. – Is an assistant professor in the Technology and Operations Management Unit at the Harvard Business School. He specializes in the management of technological innovation in firms and communities.   Professsor Lakhani’s research on distributed innovation has been published in Harvard Business Review, Innovations, Management Science, Organization Science, Research Policy and the Sloan Management Review.

Stefan Lindegaard – Is an author, speaker and strategic advisor. His focus on the topics of open innovation, social media tools and intrapreneurship has propelled him into being a trusted advisor to many large corporations. He believes open innovation requires a global perspective and he has given talks and worked with companies on open innovation in Europe, South America, the U.S. and Asia. His blog is a globally recognized destination on open innovation. You can read further at www.15inno.com.

Caroline Popper, M.D., M.P.H. – Currently serves as Co-Founder and President of Popper and Company, a firm focused on targeting at inefficiencies in the healthcare delivery system and/or at the convergence of healthcare and technology.  An internist and pathologist, she combines medical and scientific perspective with knowledge gained from managing a wide spectrum of life sciences businesses in diagnostics, devices and drug discovery.

Eric Ries – Is the creator of the Lean Startup methodology and the author of the popular entrepreneurship blog Startup Lessons Learned. He previously co-founded and served as Chief Technology Officer of IMVU. In 2007, BusinessWeek named Ries one of the Best Young Entrepreneurs of Tech and in 2009 he was honored with a TechFellow award in the category of Engineering Leadership.

Richard Roth, M.H.A. – Leads Dignity Health’s innovation efforts, which seek to create and test novel services, programs, partnerships, and/or technologies – from within and outside of healthcare – that challenge the status quo and have the potential to reduce the cost of care, improve quality, and/or increase access to services.

Nathan Waterhouse – Co-leads OpenIDEO with Tom Hulme, a Web-based platform that enables the community at large to help design human-centered solutions to social and environmental problems worldwide. Based in Palo Alto, California, Nathan develops and explores the potential of open innovation as it grows and matures as a business model, using it to create new concepts and offerings for IDEO clients in the US.

HHS is very excited to have each of these individuals involved in the Innovation Fellows Program.  Their leadership, knowledge, and outside experience will help push the boundaries of internal innovation and help ensure success in each of the four projects.  Stay tuned for the announcement of the External Innovation Fellows!

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