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TMRE: The Market Research Event


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October 8-10, 2024
Loews Royal Pacific ResortOrlando, FL

Dr. Garret Westlake
Associate Vice Provost for Innovation at Virginia Commonwealth University


Dr. Garret Westlake is leading the transformation of Virginia Commonwealth University into one of the world’s leading universities for cross-disciplinary collaboration and innovation. As VCU’s inaugural associate vice provost for innovation and the executive director of the da Vinci Center for Innovation, Dr. Westlake advances university-wide innovation and entrepreneurship. A professor of product innovation, Dr. Westlake works with Fortune 500 companies and startups on product design. He is the co-founder of the SHIFT Retail Lab - a student innovation lab and storefront recognized by Fast Company as a 2023 Innovation by Design award winner.

Prior to joining VCU, Dr. Westlake served as the inaugural associate dean of student entrepreneurship for Arizona State University’s Office of Entrepreneurship + Innovation. He was formerly a successful technology entrepreneur - the CEO and founder of a social impact software company that employed individuals with autism. He has worked closely with the Clinton Global Initiative University, the Network for Teaching Entrepreneurship, and Ashoka U. Dr. Westlake is a master facilitator of innovation, design thinking, and LEGO® SERIOUS PLAY®. Startup companies he has mentored and accelerated have generated more than $100M in revenue and funding and have been accepted to national and global accelerators.

Agenda Sessions

  • Shift Retail Lab: A Vision for the Future of Customer Insights and Product Innovation