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AUGUSTA, Maine - The Department of Economic and Community Development's (DECD) Office of Innovation is presenting phase two of the State’s Science and Technology Action Plan at the Creative Economy Conference, Juice 2.0.

"Maine's economy is facing global competition and we need to compete through innovation," said DECD Commissioner John Richardson. "Much of the research in Maine is not being commercialized or connected to our industries in a way that maximizes economic value to the state. This Action Plan is a bold approach to stimulate Maine's economy and will encourage investments in innovation, R&D and entrepreneurship."

The Maine Innovation Economy Advisory Board (MIEAB) is required by statute to develop a Science and Technology Action Plan every five years, starting in 2010. This plan describes a new phase of Maine’s investment in an innovation economy, broadening the earlier focus on building research capacity to include investment into innovation and entrepreneurship as well as R&D.

The plan was developed over the course of the last 6 to 8 months through a series of public and private forums and stakeholder input.

“The plan we’re presenting at Juice 2.0 is a strategy that aims to accomplish two things: to position Maine competitively in the global economy through capitalizing on our natural tendency to be innovative, and to create jobs for our kids and grandkids so they can continue to live in this special place,” said Dr. Catherine Renault, director of the Office of Innovation.

The plan calls for sustaining investment in research & development, growing industry R&D, focusing on getting innovative ideas, products, and processes to the commercialization stage where they impact the economy, and better aligning skills training and education with the jobs of today and tomorrow.

The plan, which is in draft form, is available on the Department of Economic and Community Development website. Public comments will be collected, and the plan is scheduled to be presented to the Legislature and the Governor’s Office in January 2010.

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