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Research Partnerships

Ryne Raffaelle

There are several ways corporate partners can benefit from RIT research. In all cases, RIT will connect your company to individuals with the expertise to develop knowledge and solutions to your industry’s specific needs.

  • Sponsored research projects – companies can provide funding to pursue a defined research project specific to their needs. A detailed proposal and agreement will be created, outlining required deliverables, intellectual property agreements, etc. In the case of faculty-led research, information may or may not be proprietary.

  • Named professorships and research posts – companies are invited to provide funding to establish a professorship or research post in a field related to their industry. These prestigious posts are awarded for a defined period of years, and are based on the joint research interests of the sponsor and the professor. Several RIT positions are generously supported by company funding. For example:

    • Gannett Distinguished Professor in the School for Media Sciences

    • The Bausch + Lomb Associate Professor in microsystems engineering

    • The Gleason Professor of Mechanical Engineering

    • Intel Professor in Microsystems

  • Named research center or laboratory – by providing support for equipment and research seed funding in a specific laboratory or research center, a company can ensure that their name is associated with industry leading activities within the facility. Companies have varying degrees of involvement in defining the specific projects within the laboratory. Some examples of current named research facilities include:

    • The Analog Devices Integrated Microsystems Lab

    • The American Packaging Corporation Center for Packaging Innovation

    • The REDCOM Telecommunications Systems Lab

    • The Toyota Production Systems Lab

    • The Knorr-Bremse Mechatronics Lab

    • The Sprint Relay Lab

To learn how your company can connect with researchers and research work at RIT, contact Ryne Raffaelle, Industry and Government Sponsored Research, at

Researching the ‘Toyota Way’

Toyota Motor Engineering & Manufacturing North America needed to research production systems for their manufacturing facilities while finding ways to educate future employees on the Toyota Way of manufacturing. They turned to RIT, one of their leading university partners, to establish a unique facility that benefited both the company and RIT mechanical engineering students.

The Toyota Production Systems Lab provides hands-on education in state-of-the-art production systems. Particular emphasis is placed on the concepts of teamwork, problem solving and process improvement by studying the fundamental behavior of production lines.

Leading the way in personalized healthcare

Dr. David Borkholder is the Bausch & Lomb Professor in Microsystems Engineering, and a recognized expert in biosensors and wearable therapies for health. He is currently leading RIT’s strategic research initiatives in personalized healthcare technology.

As a research professor, Borkholder has published numerous articles in technical, educational and medical literature and holds several patents related to cell-based biosensors, DNA analysis and blast dosimetry. He currently serves as chair of the NIH Bioengineering of Neuroscience, Vision, and Low Vision Technologies (BNVT) study section, and was named the 2016 Distinguished Inventor of the Year by the Rochester Intellectual Property Law Association.

Innovative technologies for unique learners

The Sprint Relay Experimental Distance Learning/Access Demonstration Lab serves the entire university in developing innovative technologies in support of learners who are deaf and hard-of-hearing. RIT’s specific and wide-reaching expertise in education and access issues for deaf and hard-of-hearing individuals makes the National Technical Institute for the Deaf at RIT an ideal partner for this field of research and practice.

Focusing on both on instructional activities for DHH remote learners, as well as access strategies among deaf, hard-of-hearing, and hearing students and teachers participating in remote learning experiences, the Sprint Relay Lab is a “beta testing” site for adapting, evaluating, and exporting as appropriate alternative technologies.