Duke Innovation & Entrepreneurship Initiative Expands Leadership Team

Two Duke strategists --J. Gregory Dees and L. Gregory Jones -- have joined the I&E leadership team

Two Duke University strategists -- J. Gregory Dees and L. Gregory Jones -- have joined the Duke Innovation and Entrepreneurship Initiative (I&E) leadership team, initiative director Eric Toone announced Monday. 

Duke I&E was created in 2010 to provide opportunities for students, faculty, alumni and the community in four areas: education, research, translation and social entrepreneurship. Dees, of the Fuqua School of Business, joins Duke I&E as the Rubenstein Senior Fellow in Social Entrepreneurship; Jones, the former dean of Duke Divinity School, joins as senior strategist for education.

"Innovation and entrepreneurship are university-wide goals, and we are ecstatic to welcome top innovators from different corners of Duke to the initiative," Toone said. "Both men bring experience and expertise that will help us significantly expand the number of courses, internships and experiential learning opportunities available to the university community and continue to transform Duke from a world-class creator of knowledge to a bold translator of ideas into actions." 

Dees, who played a leading role in developing the academic field of social entrepreneurship, is the founding faculty director of the Center for Advancement of Social Entrepreneurship at Fuqua. He previously taught at Stanford, Harvard and Yale universities. He has co-edited two books and published more than 60 articles, cases and classroom notes related to social entrepreneurship.

"We have a unique opportunity to build on the tremendous resources already in place," Dees said. "This new role will enable the development of a coordinated set of programs that will assure Duke of a leadership role in this arena. These programs will allow students throughout the university to experience and learn about the power of social entrepreneurship to address major challenges in fields ranging from health care and education to the environment and poverty alleviation."

In addition to his 13-year tenure as the dean of the Divinity School, Jones served as Duke's vice president and vice provost for global strategy and programs and created the Office of Global Strategy and Programs in 2010. As Duke's chief international strategist, he successfully worked across departmental, institutional and international borders to enhance the university's global educational engagement.

"In the end, our goal is for Duke students to graduate with a strong base of knowledge, the ability to work in teams to identify solutions to intractable problems in a cross-disciplinary fashion, and a working understanding of the processes for bringing an idea into practice," Jones said. "If we can accomplish that, we are well on our way to realizing President Brodhead's vision of putting knowledge in the service of society."

More information about the initiative and its programs can be found at entrepreneurship.duke.edu.