Alistair Brett, Ph.D.

Alistair M. Brett is a co-founder at Rainforest Strategies, LLP, and is co-author (with Henry Doss) of Rainforest Scorecard: A Practical Guide for Growing Innovation. Alistair’s focus is applying - innovation science to developing innovation ecosystems – what we call Rainforests – and implementing strategies for increasing innovation in complex corporate, institutional, and multi-stakeholder environments.

In addition to the USA and UK, Alistair has helped countries in Central and Eastern Europe, Central Asia, Asia, and Latin America (see Medellin client case) to commercialize science and technology from universities and research institutes. Projects at this scale and level require a nuanced understanding of leadership, strategy, and culture in relation to innovation. See our Technology Commercialization description to learn more.

Alistair has over 25 years of hands-on work with national and regional governments, universities, research institutes, and corporations creating innovation ecosystems – including  scaling-up sustainable technology transfer and technology commercialization capacity, managing intellectual property, and creating new technology based firms.

He has developed widely replicated policies and implementation plans for funding of technology development, developing patenting strategies, conducting technology assessments, creating regional technology transfer centers, incubators and science and technology parks, improving university-industry relations, and project planning and management.

Alistair is a senior consultant to the World Bank Group (see World Bank Global client case) on science, technology, and innovation where he has advised on technology development and commercialization strategies – with a focus always on practical implementation. Alistair was previously a senior consultant to Oxford Innovation Ltd, UK, and served on the Advisory Board of the (US) Federal Laboratory Consortium for Technology Transfer.

Alistair was co-developer and leader of the Russian Master of Science and Master of Business Administration degree programs in Technology Management and Commercialization. This first academic program of its kind in the Russian Federation has been running for over fifteen years. Alistair has been a presenter at over 100 educational workshops and seminars globally. He has developed models for technology assessments, research and development commercialization and ecosystem support which have been widely replicated. See client case studies: Russia and Republic of Georgia.    

Other selected projects in which Alistair has worked as a team member include: a World Bank strategy planning project in Vietnam  to provide assistance in the transition of government research institutes to largely market-driven, self-financed, and independent status; World Bank cultural change projects supporting technology commercialization in Kazakhstan including the creation of specialized R&D centers, grants for support of R&D and a commercialization strategy; and, USAID and European Commission supported projects in technology management and commercialization.

Alistair holds a B.Sc. in Physics from the University of London, and a Ph.D. in Physics, from the University of St. Andrews (Scotland), and Drexel University (USA).