Global NY Foreign Direct Investment Road Show Visits Rensselaer

Deepak Vashishth, director of the Rensselaer Center for Biotechnology and Interdisciplinary Studies, led the delegation on a tour of the facility's core labs.
November 9, 2016

Global NY Foreign Direct Investment Road Show Visits Rensselaer

Representatives from 25 countries and territories explored foreign investment opportunities in the Capital Region

On Nov. 3, representatives from 25 foreign countries and territories toured business and academic locations in the Capital Region—including Rensselaer Polytechnic Insitute—as part of an initiative to attract foreign direct investment (FDI) to New York state. The two-day “Global NY FDI Road Show” made stops at three locations in the Capital Region, with 36 consuls general and other foreign representatives who traveled from New York City for the opportunity.

Lieutenant Governor Kathy Hochul, who addressed the leaders from six continents, said, “New York state has the talent and the resources to attract foreign investment in a number of industries. The more we expose the international community to the wealth of opportunities New York state has to offer, the more foreign direct investment we will attract.”

At Rensselaer, the group spent a half-day in the Center for Biotechnology and Interdisciplinary Studies (CBIS). The day began with welcoming remarks from Richie Hunter, vice president for strategic communications and external relations.

“President Shirley Ann Jackson is leading a transformation of Rensselaer as The New Polytechnic, an emerging paradigm for teaching, learning, and research which recognizes that global challenges and opportunities are so great they cannot be adequately addressed by even the most talented person working alone,” Hunter said. “Rensselaer serves as a crossroads for collaboration—working with partners across disciplines, sectors, and geographic regions—to address complex global challenges, using the most advanced tools and technologies, many of which are developed at Rensselaer.”

Other speakers included Steve Rock, senior research scientist, who spoke about the work being done in the Center for Automation Technologies and Systems; Nick Viggiani, assistant vice president research, who spoke about Rensselaer applied research and industry partnerships; and CBIS Director Deepak Vashishth, who gave an overview of the research at CBIS and who also led a tour of the facility.

The session concluded with a working lunch led by Jonathan Dordick, vice president for research, who spoke on “Research That Matters.”

“My colleagues and I were very excited to learn more about New York state and to meet with state government officials, representatives from diverse industry groups, and economic development organizations,” said Hon. Jana Trnovcova, consul general of Slovakia and president of the Society of Foreign Consuls, 2015-2016. “We are grateful to Governor Cuomo and the Global NY staff for offering this opportunity, and we look forward to many more in the future.”

“Under Governor Cuomo’s leadership, New York’s skilled and talented workforce is proving to be quite capable of competing in the global marketplace,” said ESD President, CEO, and Commissioner Howard Zemsky. “And with nearly 2,000 international companies operating in New York state—including approximately 600 manufacturers— foreign direct investment helps drive job creation in several key industries.”

The foreign representatives traveled with several Global NY officials from New York City to the Capital Region. Prior to visiting Rensselaer, the group stopped at semiconductor manufacturer Global Foundries’ research and development facility in the town of Malta. The group heard from local leaders of the nanotechnology industry, about chip-making technology, nanomaterials, and nanoelectronics, before taking a tour of the facility.

The tour was led by Empire State Development (ESD), New York’s chief economic development agency. The mission of ESD is to promote a vigorous and growing state economy, encourage business investment and job creation, and support diverse, prosperous local economies across New York through the efficient use of loans, grants, tax credits, real estate development, marketing, and other forms of assistance.

About Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute

Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, founded in 1824, is America’s first technological research university. The university offers bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral degrees in engineering; the sciences; information technology and web sciences; architecture; management; and the arts, humanities, and social sciences. Rensselaer faculty advance research in a wide range of fields, with an emphasis on biotechnology, nanotechnology, computational science and engineering, data science, and the media arts and technology. The Institute has an established record of success in the transfer of technology from the laboratory to the marketplace, fulfilling its founding mission of applying science “to the common purposes of life.” For more information, please visit





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About Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute

Founded in 1824, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute is America’s first technological research university. Rensselaer encompasses five schools, over 30 research centers, more than 140 academic programs including 25 new programs, and a dynamic community made up of over 6,800 students and 104,000 living alumni. Rensselaer faculty and alumni include upwards of 155 National Academy members, six members of the National Inventors Hall of Fame, six National Medal of Technology winners, five National Medal of Science winners, and a Nobel Prize winner in Physics. With nearly 200 years of experience advancing scientific and technological knowledge, Rensselaer remains focused on addressing global challenges with a spirit of ingenuity and collaboration. To learn more, please visit