Recent Posts:

Competitive Advantage: Not Just About Tech

Rob Day: February 26, 2011, 9:18 AM

There's been too much blind faith within the cleantech venture sector on proprietary technology as the primary way for startups to create a competitive advantage.

Certainly, holding a defensible patent can help a startup with a cost or performance advantage to maintain that advantage over time.  Proprietary IP has been part of the success story of early cleantech "winners" such as First Solar, for example.

But the pursuit of such proprietary technology can be very expensive -- in both direct and indirect ways.

First of all, it can be expensive to develop and commercialize products based upon truly differentiated core technology.  Thin-film solar is again another example of...

Clean Economy Summit: The Emerging Love Fest Between the U.S. Military and the Cleantech Sector

Rob Day: February 14, 2011, 10:22 AM

After attending the Clean Economy Summit a couple of weeks ago, things have been a bit of a blur, so I'm only now able to write about one major takeaway I had from the event.

There's an emerging love affair between the cleantech sector and the U.S. military.

At the event, two of the best-attended sessions were a speech by the Secretary of the Navy Ray Mabus and a special panel session on the military and energy technology innovation.  And for good reason -- while the legislative branch of the U.S. government continues to dither away the opportunity to establish robust cleantech markets in the U.S., the military can't afford to wait.  And so they're providing a pathway to...