CDL Deploys Rapid Response Effort Connecting Entrepreneurs, Scientists, and Venture Capitalists to Deliver COVID-19 Solutions

CDL-Atlanta mobilizes to help respond to the global COVID-19 crisis.

CDL-Atlanta, Georgia Tech’s Creative Destruction Lab program for the commercialization of early-stage science, is pivoting to help respond to the global COVID-19 crisis. The new effort, CDL Recovery, a collaboration between the eight universities that form CDL’s global network, will work to transform technological innovations into useful products and services in the areas of public health and economic recovery.

The organization is interested in working with innovative teams, and the program connects entrepreneurs to mentors, scientists, venture capitalists, and others whose expertise can help accelerate the growth and success of new ventures.

Early-stage ventures interested in participating are invited to complete an application at

CDL’s mission is to transform science projects into massively scalable products and services that benefit humanity. Founded at the University of Toronto’s Rotman School of Management, and now operating across eight universities in four countries, CDL engages leading entrepreneurs, economists, scientists, inventors, business leaders, and investors from around the world to enhance the idea-to-deployment cycle of innovative science and technology via a rigorous, objective-setting process. The program has successfully brought to market new technologies in a diverse set of frontier fields, including quantum computing, space, and artificial intelligence, creating billions of dollars in equity value in its short history.

The new CDL Recovery rapid response program takes these proven methods and applies them to new initiatives built on science that will meet urgent public health needs today and anticipate the needs of a post-COVID-19 world, particularly in efforts to improve preparation and reslience in the face of future crises.

Peter Thompson, a professor in Georgia Tech’s Scheller College of Business and co-site lead of CDL-Atlanta, says it is time to look beyond the immediate crisis to develop support for the recovery.

“So much of our federal, state, and local efforts are quite rightly focused on addressing the immediate needs of the crisis,” he said. “But there is an equally important need to look ahead, to think strategically as well as tactically. We are asking what technologies might help us be more prepared and more resilient a year from now or two years from now, and how we can help make sure those technologies get from the lab to deployment. These are the questions that CDL was built to address.”

CDL-Atlanta is collaborating with several partners in the Atlanta innovation ecosystem. And Lt. Governor Geoff Duncan is leading efforts to bring technology and innovation together.

"It is great to see the technology and innovation sector rallying to the COVID19 crisis,” Duncan said. “I am confident the Creative Destruction Lab's rapid response recovery effort kicking off now will get our best scientists and entrepreneurs together quickly to help with both the medical fight and the economic fight to recover."


Creative Destruction Lab (CDL) is a nonprofit organization that delivers an objectives-based program for massively scalable, seed-stage, science- and technology-based companies. Its nine-month program allows founders to learn from experienced entrepreneurs, increasing their likelihood of success. Founded in 2012 by Professor Ajay Agrawal at the Rotman School of Management at the University of Toronto, the program has expanded to eight sites across four countries: Oxford (Saïd Business School, University of Oxford), Paris (HEC Paris), Atlanta (Scheller College of Business, Georgia Institute of Technology), Vancouver (Sauder School of Business, University of British Columbia), Montreal (HEC Montréal), Calgary (Haskayne School of Business, University of Calgary), and Halifax (Rowe School of Business, Dalhousie University).



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