Innovation Advisory Council Terms of Reference


Transformation 2030 sets the path for SJSU to expand experiential learning opportunities for all SJSU students to sharpen their skill sets through research, scholarship, and creative activities, as well as entrepreneurship and cross-disciplinary innovation training. We must establish the support mechanisms required to help move groundbreaking research and discovery out of the lab and into the marketplace and to support our students and faculty in becoming change agents and leaders. We will do this by nurturing great ideas and investing in bold solutions to today’s biggest challenges.


The purpose of the SJSU Innovation Advisory Council (IAC) is to advise the Vice President for Research and Innovation (VPRI) on solutions critical to building and growing innovation, entrepreneurship, and commercialization support for SJSU students, faculty, and staff. IAC serves as a vehicle for ongoing dialogue between SJSU leadership and community leaders to help inform SJSU’s innovation agenda, strategy, goals, and programs.


  • Advising on the overall SJSU innovation strategy and areas of focus;
  • Recommending and promoting structures, policies, and procedures required to build and grow the innovation enterprise;
  • Proposing solutions to alleviate identified barriers to innovation culture and programs;
  • Advocating for policies and procedures that foster, support, and reward innovation and entrepreneurship;
  • Collaborating with others involved in the research and innovation enterprise and recommending mechanisms that satisfy the innovation, entrepreneurship, and commercialization support needs of students, faculty, and staff;
  • Providing strategic advice regarding emerging science and technology issues and trends, and identifying leading-edge operational models that will support the growth and sustainability of the SJSU innovation enterprise;
  • Sharing resources, information, and best practices for academic innovation, entrepreneurship, and commercialization support programs;
  • Acting as conduits of information and collaboration between and among SJSU and the external community; and
  • IAC members will be available to the VPRI for strategic and operational consultation.


The IAC shall be composed of a minimum of nine (9) and a maximum of 15 members. The members are a combination of business leaders and successful entrepreneurs with expertise in business, venture capital, technology commercialization, and entrepreneurship support. The members are appointed by, and serve at the pleasure of, the VPRI.

IAC members are appointed ordinarily for four (4) years. Inaugural committee appointments, however, may be for three (3), four (4), or five (5) years, to establish staggered IAC appointment terms. Appointment renewals permissible.

IAC members will cease to be members if their appointment term ends, they resign from the IAC, or they fail to attend two consecutive IAC meetings without acceptable advance notice to the Chair.

The inaugural IAC Chair will be appointed by the VPRI for a term of two (2) years. Chairs for subsequent two-year terms will be elected by the IAC members.


IAC will meet twice a year. Meetings will be held at the call of the Chair, in consultation with the VPRI. Notice of a meeting will be duly delivered to the IAC members at least four weeks in advance, and will include a meeting agenda, a draft of which will be set by the Chair, in consultation with the VPRI. The duration of the IAC meetings will vary depending on the state of business.

Meetings will be conducted in person on SJSU campus or virtually, as circumstances require, with each being two (2) to four (4) hours in duration. IAC members are permitted to select another suitable person to attend as their proxy for one (1) regularly scheduled meeting annually.

In addition, it is anticipated that IAC members will serve on subcommittees and working groups as may be required to advance the goals of the council.


If required, specific IAC recommendations to the VPRI, including Chair elections, will be made by way of a discussion followed by a resolution and a vote. A recommendation vote will be decided by simple majority. For voting purposes, a quorum shall be defined as one third of the IAC members, but at no time less than three (3) IAC members.


IAC membership will be strictly on a volunteer basis, with no monetary compensation.