BIRMINGHAM – Astound Research is accelerating the speed of science.
Astound Research is a platform designed to facilitate collaboration between industry and academia. The company created a space for quick and efficient conversations between industry scientists and university scientists, allowing corporations to find the most qualified university-based researchers for their needs. In turn, those researchers get funding for their work, labs, and students. It’s a win for businesses looking to get products to market and a win for university-based researchers, who are seeing less federal funding for their work.
The “why” is simple according to Astound Founder Joel Berry.
“It has to be done.”
Berry believes a lack of structure in how relationships between industries and universities are formed and managed are roadblocks to scientific progress.
“This chasm between industry and academia means academic expertise remains siloed-off on university campuses or in academic journals, with little impact on the world writ large,’ stated Berry.
Astound’s innovative model is a response to the need for increased collaboration and investment in academic research. As cited by the National Science Foundation, the U.S. spent $717 billion on R&D in 2020, yet only 0.9% was allocated by corporations toward basic and applied research at U.S. universities. Astound Research seeks to address this disparity and promote a more balanced, collaborative approach to scientific discovery.
The race for a suitable COVID-19 vaccine demonstrated the power of corporate/university research collaboration to solve a pressing global challenge. But often corporations and universities have trouble collaborating toward shared scientific goals. Corporate scientists must sift through the tens of thousands of potential collaborators at research universities to find the best scientists for their project.
The Astound platform addresses these challenges by simplifying the process of matching corporate and academic scientists via advanced AI matching. By on-boarding research scientists from a variety of universities across the globe, Astound allows industry contacts to search for the best match. Once they’ve found a good match, they can connect to the research scientist and have a quick conversation to assess interest. The platform provides private conversation rooms for scientists to communicate, so that both sides evaluate fit and make a decision on whether to proceed.
“Partnerships between industry and universities represent an incredible opportunity to solve fundamental problems across so many different diseases and global challenges,” said CEO Morgan Cole. “Better alignment with their industry counterpart’s R&D focus means our global colleges and universities can accelerate critical science.”
Since Morgan’s arrival in July 2023, the Astound platform has seen substantial growth, doubling in both researchers on-boarded and corporations posting collaboration opportunities. Those corporations range from small to mid sized companies in both Birmingham and Huntsville, to three of the largest pharmaceutical companies in the world. The platform is designed to reduce the friction of scientist matching by using AI and machine learning to match research scientists with industry opportunities.
Astound Research’s mission is to enhance corporate collaboration and investment into university-based research and development. The company believes in the power of collaboration and has built a platform that allows for seamless interactions and meaningful dialogues between scientists and industry leaders.
The platform is free for industry to post funding opportunities. Interested companies can get started now on Astound’s automated, confidential platform by visiting www.astoundresearch.com