Founding Director

Robert M. Metcalfe will soon complete his 10th year as Professor of Innovation in the Cockrell School of Engineering at The University of Texas at Austin.

Metcalfe is the Founding Director of the Innovation Center, launched in 2011. He is also UT Austin’s Murchison Fellow of Free Enterprise and Professor of Entrepreneurship in UT Austin’s McCombs School of Business.

He serves as Principal Investigator of TexasGEO, which aims to solve energy with Texas startups. GEO is funded by the DOE to encourage startups to advance technologies delivering cheap, safe, clean, abundant, ubiquitous, deep, closed-loop, baseload geothermal energy. 

Prior to his roles in higher education, Metcalfe was an Internet pioneer beginning 1970 at MIT, Harvard, Xerox Palo Alto Research Center, Stanford, and 3Com. He invented Ethernet at Xerox Parc on May 22, 1973. Today Ethernet is the Internet’s standard plumbing. It now adds, especially if we count Wireless Ethernet (Wi-Fi), billions of standard Internet ports per year. Metcalfe has won the Bell, Hopper, Japan C&C, Marconi, McCluskey, Shannon and Stibitz Prizes. He is a Life Trustee Emeritus of MIT and a member of the National Academy of Engineering. Metcalfe received the IEEE Medal of Honor in 1996 and the National Medal of Technology in 2005, both for his leadership in the invention, standardization and commercialization of Ethernet.