Innovation Expert Richard Lester Speaks at RIT Sept. 28

Talk is part of lecture series on regional economic development

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Richard Lester

Renowned innovation proponent and author Richard Lester will be the third speaker in the Rochester and the Innovation Economy lecture series sponsored by New York State Assemblyman Joseph Morelle and Rochester Institute of Technology. The lecture begins at 4 p.m. Sept. 28 in RIT’s Louise Slaughter Hall, room 2240.

Lester’s presentation will be preceded by a panel discussion including Morelle, WXXI president Norm Silverstein and Ron Hira, associate professor of public policy. WHAM-TV’s Evan Dawson will moderate the event.

Lester, who heads the Department of Nuclear Sciences and Engineering at Massachusetts Institute of Technology, is perhaps best known for his work on strengthening the links between innovation and economic growth on both the national and regional level.

“This series is dedicated to the notion that our economic future will depend on our willingness to invest in new ideas and entrepreneurial creativity,” says Morelle, who authored a 2005 report, “A State of Innovation: Unleashing the Power of New York’s Entrepreneurial Economy.”

“Professor Lester is a widely known and respected voice on the subjects of productivity and competitiveness and will lend valuable insight into the policies we should be pursuing as we rebuild our local and upstate economies,” Morelle continues.

“Richard Lester has been one of the most influential participants in the debates on America’s competitiveness for more than two decades,” adds Hira. “His empirical work studying innovation in the private sector and the policies to support it have been groundbreaking.”

The free public lecture is sponsored by Morelle and RIT’s College of Liberal Arts and E. Philip Saunders College of Business. For more information, contact Hira at 585-475-7052 or