Brian Abraham | Weatherhead School at Case Western Reserve University

BrianĀ Abraham

Brian Abraham
PhD Management - Designing Sustainable Systems, 2018 - Present
Doctor of Management, 2016 - 2018
Institute for Innovation and Entrepreneurship, Hamline University

Dr. Abraham received his undergraduate degrees in Spanish and Chemistry from Skidmore College (NY) in 1988. He then went on to receive his Ph.D. in Chemistry at Tufts University (MA) in 1993 and his MBA at Babson College (MA) in 2002. Professionally he has worked as a successful business executive and faculty member within higher education straddling both practice and theory with a focus on technology oriented ventures.

Curriculum Vita

MBA, Babson College, 2002
PhD, Tufts University, 1993
BA, Skidmore College, 1988
BA, Skidmore College, 1988

Interests and Courses


Disruptive innovation in high technology firms has been well studied and published in both the academic journals and popular press. Despite the well-known and understood issues surrounding disruptive innovation, large firms continue to be disrupted. One of the more interesting technology industry verticals is the pharmaceutical industry. Long been known to be disrupted by small upstarts, the large pharmaceutical firms have shifted from harvesting their own research and development to acquiring these smaller upstarts. Nevertheless, these same large pharmaceutical firms continue to expend large sums of money on research and development. Are these research and development expenditures impactful or are the monies better spent on additional acquisitions?

Since the passing of the Bayh-Dole Act, university technology transfer offices have been formed across the United States with a common mission to commercialize the intellectual property developed by the various university research groups. Despite significant expenditures across the country, commercial outcomes have been highly inconsistent. This lack of consistency warrants analysis with a focus on university policy decisions and their impact on the variability of success between institutions.


Curriculum Development: I have been active in curriculum development and execution since 2002. Over the past 13 years I have designed both curricular and co-curricular offerings including the following:

Babson College: I designed and taught the course Technology Entrepreneurship for several years. I was also on the team to design a Ph.D. in Entrepreneurship. Additionally, I worked with corporate sponsors (specifically Battelle Memorial Institute) to develop a curricular offering whereby students develop business models and plans leveraging Battelleā€™s intellectual capital through new venture creation.

The Ohio State University: I worked with The Ohio State University to develop, establish and teach in their award winning Technology Entrepreneurship Commercialization (TEC) Institute. This was a cross-campus, cross-disciplinary approach to entrepreneurial curriculum that was ranked a top 10 program in the US. I continue to collaborate with OSU on a number of joint programs.

Michigan State University: In the late summer of 2012, I transitioned full time to higher education as Executive Director of Spartan Innovations with a charter to manage entrepreneurial activities at Michigan State. While at Michigan State, I worked with faculty and administration to first establish new course offerings, then to add co-curricular activities, introduce and establish a minor in Entrepreneurship and launch a post doctoral program in Entrepreneurship. I secured funding for these programs through grants and gifts.

The University of St. Thomas: Since arriving at the University of St. Thomas I have drafted, funded and executed a new strategic plan that includes the launching of a freshman immersion program, a series of entrepreneurship bootcamps, a cross-campus minor, a postdoctoral program in Entrepreneurship and a 5-year BA/MBA program. The freshman immersion program and bootcamps are both running.

Recent Courses and Syllabi

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