Ethernet Inventor and Professor of Innovation Robert Metcalfe Looks at Energy Issues through Internet Lens in Unique Session with Students

Robert M. Metcalfe, Internet pioneer and newly appointed professor of innovation at The University of Texas at Austin Cockrell School of Engineering, will present "Enernet: Internet Lessons for Solving Energy" on Jan. 20 from 4-5 p.m. in the Avaya Auditorium of the ACES building (room 2.302).

Robert M. Metcalfe
Robert M. Metcalfe is the inventor of Ethernet and professor of innovation at the Cockrell School of Engineering. 

Students across campus are invited to attend the presentation, which will be followed by QandA.

In his talk, Metcalfe reviews the 64-year history of how the world has continued to meet its needs for cheap and clean information using the Internet. By analogy, he proposes insights into how we will meet accelerating world needs for cheap and clean energy using a concept he calls "Enernet."

"Solving energy issues of course involves thermodynamics and public policy, but the best mindset for solving energy is networking," Metcalfe said. "Blue is the new green. After all, green has baggage and solving energy (blue) is not the same as solving environment (green)."

Cockrell School Dean Gregory L. Fenves said, "We are very excited to have Bob join our faculty and begin sharing his insights and knowledge with our students, faculty and community. This presentation will be the first of many opportunities led by Bob for lively discussion on topics surrounding innovation, entrepreneurship and leadership in the many fields of technology we address in engineering."

Metcalfe's presentation will be the first in a speaker series hosted by the Cockrell School that brings internationally recognized technology leaders to campus to interact with students.

Dr. Robert M. Metcalfe is a professor of innovation and fellow of the Clint W. Murchison Sr. Chair of Free Enterprise based in the Electrical and Computer Engineering Department at The University of Texas at Austin Cockrell School of Engineering. He has been a general partner of Polaris Venture Partners since 2001 and continues to advise the Massachusetts-based firm as a venture partner. During the 1980s, Metcalfe founded and grew the billion-dollar computer networking company, 3Com Corp., which merged with Hewlett-Packard in 2010. In the 1970s, he worked in the Computer Science Laboratory of the Xerox Palo Alto Research Center, where he invented today's local-area networking standard, Ethernet, for which he received the National Medal of Technology.