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Air University Innovation Accelerator office pushes ideas, research ‘one step beyond’

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The Air University Innovation Accelerator office’s vision is to push the university’s contributions to national security, strategic competition and integrated deterrence “one step beyond.” The AUiX office provides resources, expertise and processes for networking innovative ideas and research from students, faculty and staff with innovation partners.

MAXWELL AIR FORCE BASE, Ala.-- The Air University Innovation Accelerator office’s vision is to push the university’s contributions to national security, strategic competition and integrated deterrence “one step beyond.”

The AUiX office provides resources, expertise and processes for networking innovative ideas and research from students, faculty and staff with innovation partners.

“A student or faculty member can bring an idea, paper or project to AUiX, and we’ll amplify the idea by spreading it across our networks,” said Bill DeMarco, AUiX chief of Innovation Development. “We have connections in academia, industry and across the Department of Defense and the Air Force with multiple different entities.”

The office, which stood up in April 2021, already has several projects in the works focused on getting traction with real-world companies through MGMWERX, which augments AU research and idea production.

DeMarco said one of the projects his team has been working on is with the Ira C. Eaker Center for Leadership Development. The project is a new gaming concept, Developing Airmen With Games, or DAWG. The center’s chief of research integration, Matthew Correia, developed the game, which he pitched at a recent Air Education and Training Command iSummit, winning first place and a $65,000 prize. DAWG is designed to improve leadership development across the force, and DeMarco has been working with MGMWERX to get Correia connected with civilian industry.

“While AUiX is the innovation accelerator for Air University, it really has a reach across the installation and way beyond the borders of Maxwell-Gunter by leveraging the fire power of DoD and industry innovation networks,” said Dr. Mehmed Ali, director of Air University Academic Services. “This mix brings the best ideas to bear for the benefit of the students, faculty and staff at AU, while propelling our innovation outward.”

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