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                             Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute

Contact:   Rebekah Mullaney
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Troy, N.Y. -  8/3/2018

Business Strategist Paul Schoemaker to Keynote Lighting Research Center Annual Conference

Paul Schoemaker, Ph.D., will give the keynote at the Lighting Research Center (LRC) Partner-Alliance Event, to be held September 5-6 in Troy, New York. Dr. Schoemaker is a pioneer in the field of decision sciences, among the first to combine the practical ideas of decision theory, behavioral economics, scenario planning, and risk management into a set of strategic decision-making tools for managers. He is co-author of a landmark book on the subject, Winning Decisions: Getting It Right the First Time. Schoemaker is also an entrepreneur, as founder and CEO of Decision Strategies International, Inc. Also a dedicated educator, he served for a decade as research director of the Mack Institute for Innovation Management at the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania. He was also a professor for 12 years at the University of Chicago’s Graduate School of Business.
More than 100 guests attended the 2017 Partner-Alliance Event, making it one of the larger LRC conferences held to date. This year’s event is free for all LRC Partners, Alliance members and special invited guests. If your company or organization is listed on this page, or if you received an invite from the LRC, then you are welcome to attend!
Bridges in Light
This is not the first time Paul Schoemaker has spoken at a LRC event. On October 22, 2003, a proactive coalition of the lighting industry's most influential players gathered for a first-of-its-kind symposium in Saratoga Springs, New York, to chart a new course for the field of lighting. The Bridges in Light symposium, organized by the LRC, focused on four critical themes: Solid-State Lighting, Light and Health, Sustainable Lighting, and the Value of Lighting. Dr. Schoemaker was the keynote speaker at that event, urging the lighting industry to take risks and to face the inevitable changes within the industry. "Leadership is about taking the long view and getting the big picture rather than focusing on narrow corporate concerns," said Schoemaker. Dr. Mark Rea and Govi Rao co-chaired the event. Rao noted that the event was just the first step in a long journey toward industry change and helping consumers see the importance of lighting in their lives. "Lighting is ubiquitous," said Rao, "but as an industry, we don't do a good job of educating consumers about the lighting that is all around them."
Taking Stock of Where We Are To Create the Future
Dr. Schoemaker will revisit our original scenarios to see where they missed the boat vs. having been on target. This will allow for some preliminary updates drawing on the collective wisdom of the participants, with possible further refinement thereafter. Schoemaker will highlight lessons learned from our past views as well as emphasize the importance of collective leadership for industry survival. He will share research about when, how and why industries shoot themselves in the foot, drawing on notable examples from oil & gas, pharmaceuticals, accounting and banking. He shall discuss to what extent the underlying risk factors that caused profound systemic damage in these earlier cases apply to the lighting industry and what forms the possible collateral damage might take under a passive approach to profound changes afoot in LED and beyond. Schoemaker will share some insights from his forthcoming book with Wharton professor George Day about See Sooner-Act Faster: How Vigilant Leaders Navigate Digital Turbulence (MIT Press, 2019). He will highlight the traps and biases vulnerable organizations and industries typically fall victim and suggest practical remedies based on best practice from companies who successfully adapted to digital turmoil in the U.S. and beyond.
This program has been made possible thanks to generous funding from the Glenn W. Bailey Memorial Fellowship. 
Glenn W. Bailey Memorial Fellowship
Glenn W. Bailey was a major force in lighting. Under his leadership, Genlyte became one of the two largest luminaire companies in North America with a company culture focused on productivity and openness. In 2010, the Cornelia T. Bailey Foundation provided an endowment to the LRC memorializing Glenn Bailey’s contribution to the lighting industry. The stated objective of the endowment is to provide support to the LRC to establish closer ties with lighting manufacturers with a strong presence in the United States.
LRC Partner-Alliance Event 
September 5-6, 2018 
Troy, New York

To register for the event, please contact Rebekah Mullaney at

About the Lighting Research Center
The Lighting Research Center (LRC) at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute is the world's leading center for lighting research and education. Established in 1988 by the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA), the LRC conducts research in solid-state lighting, light and health, transportation lighting and safety, energy efficiency, and plant pathology. LRC lighting scientists with multidisciplinary expertise in research, technology, design, and human factors, collaborate with a global network of leading manufacturers and government agencies, developing innovative lighting solutions for projects that range from the Boeing 787 Dreamliner to U.S. Navy submarines to hospital neonatal intensive-care units. In 1990, the LRC became the first university research center to offer graduate degrees in lighting and today, offers a M.S. in lighting and a Ph.D. to educate future leaders in lighting. With 35 full-time faculty and staff, 15 graduate students, and a 30,000 sq. ft. laboratory space, the LRC is the largest university-based lighting research and education organization in the world.

About Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute
Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, founded in 1824, is America's first technological research university. The university offers bachelor's, master's, and doctoral degrees in engineering; the sciences; information technology and web sciences; architecture; management; and the arts, humanities, and social sciences. Rensselaer faculty advance research in a wide range of fields, with an emphasis on biotechnology, nanotechnology, computational science and engineering, data science, and the media arts and technology. The Institute has an established record of success in the transfer of technology from the laboratory to the marketplace, fulfilling its founding mission of applying science "to the common purposes of life."