Annabel Strauss ‘20 announced as a Rough Draft Venture Fellow

Each year at Rough Draft Ventures, General Catalyst’s student founder focused program, meets hundreds of students who are shaping entrepreneurial communities across campuses in Boston — hackathon organizers, entrepreneurship club leaders, code club organizers, and more. Of those students, they select ten to join the program as Venture Fellows.

Venture Fellows are ambassadors for RDV and fellow entrepreneurs on campus, helping to identify and support student founders. They work closely with student groups and collaborate on events and programs to bolster the student entrepreneurship community. Every other week, Venture Fellows hear pitches from top student founders and make recommendations for backing highest potential companies.

Annabel Strauss ‘19 was a selected student from Brown, and she studies Computer Science and Economics. She has spent her summers in tech as a software engineer intern at Facebook, OkCupid, and Instagram. Annabel is passionate about women’s empowerment, particularly in tech. In high school, she was a club head for Girls Who Code and founded a conference for NYC young women in tech called Bit by Bit: Breaking the Barrier for Girls in Tech. At Brown, Annabel leads the Community Team of the Brown Entrepreneurship Program. She enjoys getting to know all the student founders on campus and talking to them about their ventures. Read more about the other Boston Venture Fellows, here.


10K Research Grant Awarded to Study “Future of Work and Aging: New Challenges and Opportunities.”

CEIBS Research Fund: “Aged to Perfection: Benefits from An Inactive Population” in Honour of Dr. Gerard Van Schaik, Co-Chairman of CEIBS Board of Directors Future of Work and Aging: New Challenges and Opportunities  

Primary Investigator: Banu Ozkazanc-Pan, Ph.D., Visiting Associate Professor of Sociology and Faculty, The Jonathan M. Nelson Center for Entrepreneurship, Brown University; Associate Professor of Management, College of Management, University of Massachusetts

Co-Primary Investigator: Jennifer Nazareno, Ph.D., Assistant Professor, School of Public Health and The Jonathan M. Nelson Center for Entrepreneurship, Brown University

Their study is titled: Future of Work and Aging: New Challenges and Opportunities










In recent years, increased attention has been focused on the Future of Work or those new conditions of work that will arise due to the rise and use of technological advances, such as artificial intelligence (AI), virtual and mixed reality, blockchain and others. The concerns and opportunities arising out of these advances are the replacement of human workers with automation or robots with advantages such as lower costs, less errors and increased productivity. At the same time, humans are now living longer, requiring more resources in later life, and relying on inadequate medical, social and economic systems and structures to take care of their health and well-being. Such workers, who were indispensable to the growth of economies, are now findings themselves out of the workforce, becoming replaced by younger generations as well as non-human workers. The convergence of these two important trends warrants further attention and research to understand the challenges and opportunities arising out of the growth of technological advances in the context of rapidly aging populations of societies that need long term care. What does the Future of Work hold for an aging workforce as rapid technological and social changes impact how work gets done and how societies respond? Already, research has demonstrated that there could be growing inequalities as automation and AI are being used to make decisions impacting the livelihood of communities, such as how welfare is distributed and how people become labeled as potential future criminals. There is also concern about a future that is ‘jobless’ for humans as production becomes fully automated in certain sectors. These concerns become amplified for aging populations in industrialized and wealthy nations who require increased resources, such as long term care and health services, from caregivers that often have migrant backgrounds. Research in this area has shown that often caregivers do not have enough savings to retire and continue to take care of clients who are, in fact, sometimes younger themselves. This project combines the expertise of the principle investigators in the areas of technology and healthcare and aims to understand the implications and consequences of rapid technological and social changes as they relate to an aging workforce in the context of Future of Work. The PI, Prof. Banu Ozkazanc-Pan, has expertise in studying technology and examining the role of technology in creating barriers and opportunities for different segments of the population. The co-PI, Prof. Jennifer Nazareno, has carried out research examining the conditions, opportunities and challenges of aging populations and their health and long-term care needs.

The aims of this project are to 1) understand the ongoing trends at the intersection of Future of Work and aging population, 2) identify opportunities for engaging the aging population as changes in the nature of work take shape via technological advances, and 3) identify challenges for an aging population with respect to their ability to contribute to the workforce.

Data collection will take place via a combination of qualitative and quantitative approaches and will be predominantly in the U.S. Interviews will take place with technology CEOs and entrepreneurs, Mayors of various size cities in the U.S., and healthcare providers and workers. The PI has previously worked technologists and Mayors and will utilize her networks to gain access to at least 25 individuals to understand their points of view, experiences and practices or policies. She is also part of a Future of Work council in the city of Boston and will conduct focus groups with members who represent different sectors of work. The co-PI has carried out extensive research on long-term care and will access healthcare providers and workers to conduct interviews with at least 25 of them. Both investigators will also conduct interviews with 20-25 individuals over the age of 65 to gain an understanding of their experiences. Quantitative approaches will be utilized to illustrate trends and changes in the workforce with regard to technological advances and social changes. These trends will be identified using data from the American Community Survey as well as other databases. Given that both investigators have carried out research in relation to technological changes and long-term care, preliminary findings from previous work indicates that technological and social changes will most likely push out older workers from the tech sector while also increasing demands on the labor and services of low-wage long-term care givers. This project will provide in-depth research into the convergence of these two trends and highlight potential opportunities as well as challenges that will face societies and organizations. Any publication resulting from the project will acknowledge the financial support of the CEIBS research fund on “Aged to Perfection: Benefits from An Inactive Population” in Honour of Dr. Gerard Van Schaik, Co-Chairman of CEIBS Board of Directors.

Nelson Center welcomes the Brown Biotech Investment Group

Nelson Center welcomes the Brown Biotech Investment Group

The Brown Biotech Investment Group (BBIG) is a group of students interested in the intersection between healthcare and entrepreneurship. Through Nelson Center’s advisory support, the group will educate and engage its members on biotechnology and investments while also providing a tangible benefit to the University. BBIG members come from diverse academic backgrounds and focus on interdisciplinary collaboration to help members advance their learning and career goals. Check them out on Facebook.

Announcing the 2018-19 Peer Entrepreneurs In Residence

Announcing the 2018-19 Peer Entrepreneurs In Residence

Meet the newest cohort of Peer Entrepreneurs in Residence (PEIR)! The PEIR program is a critical part of the Nelson Center’s activities. In it, students serve as mentors and additional resources for their fellow students. Whether it is exploring an unmet need, designing a value proposition, or developing a sustainability model, PEIRs work with founders to clarify and sharpen their ideas. Many PEIRs, through their own ventures or through internships and other experiences, have knowledge of particular sectors and can help refer students to additional resources. Learn more about this year’s cohort here.

If you’d like to chat with them about your venture, kick around a nascent idea, or talk startup life in general—drop them a line. You can email them or sign up for their office hours here.

Apply to the Venture Capital Inclusion Lab

Apply to the Venture Capital Inclusion Lab

The Jonathan M. Nelson Center for Entrepreneurship is excited to launch the Venture Capital Inclusion Lab, led by Dr. Banu Ozkazanc-Pan, a visiting associate professor in Sociology. Dr. Ozkazanc-Pan and a team of graduate and undergraduate students will conduct a research study on the venture capital (VC) industry, funded by the Kauffman Foundation. This study aims to understand how bias and decision-making affect VC-backed investments. Students with an interest in understanding equality and inclusion as it relates to the VC industry are encouraged to apply. You will work directly with Dr. Banu Ozkazanc-Pan and graduate students who will help direct the VC Inclusion Lab.

Apply ASAP or by Sunday, September 16, 2018. Click on the links below to learn more and apply.

Undergraduate Research Assistant (10 openings)
Graduate Student Research Lead (2 openings)

Announcing Assistant Professor, Jennifer Nazareno, Ph.D.

Announcing Assistant Professor, Jennifer Nazareno, Ph.D.

We are pleased to announce Jennifer Nazareno, Ph.D. is now an assistant professor with a dual appointment with the Jonathan M. Nelson Center for Entrepreneurship and the School of Public Health. She was previously an AHRQ/NRSA and Presidential Diversity Postdoctoral Fellow at Brown University. Professor Nazareno’s specialty areas include the structural and social determinants of health as well as the political economy and the organization of care that shape the public-private framework of U.S. health and long-term care systems. Her work specifically examines the role of women’s migration, labor and entrepreneurship in this space.

While at the Center, Jennifer recently published a review article, Global Dynamics of Immigrant Entrepreneurship in the International Journal of Entrepreneurial Behavior and Research (IJEBR) where she and her colleagues examined the remarkable shifts in immigrant entrepreneurship, from local, labor-intensive, service-oriented enterprises to global, knowledge-intensive, and professional services. For example, some of the largest U.S. venture capital-backed public high technology companies were started by immigrants, such as Intel, Solectron, Sanmina-SCI, Sun Microsystems, eBay, Yahoo! and Google. Jennifer and her colleagues also observed the emergence of new immigrant entrepreneurs among national origin groups that historically had low rates of self-employment, such as Mexicans and Filipinos, and among the newest of the more recent immigrant groups, such as Vietnamese, Cambodians, Bolivians, Ethiopians and Eritreans. This coming spring, Dr. Nazareno will be teaching a new course that traces the U.S. history of Italian, Jewish and German immigrant entrepreneurs starting from the 18th century to today’s emerging immigrant entrepreneurial groups in various industries.

Learn more about Dr. Nazareno here.