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Waves of Innovation III


Time is short, submitting is easy, and the process is fun and rewarding

How much are your ideas worth?

Almost $900,000 has been awarded to nine projects since 2014. In 2017, winners may receive a grant up to $150,000 to improve the University in one or more of the following ways:

  • Enhance teaching and learning
  • Foster scholarly and creative activity
  • Create new revenue opportunities through increased enrollment, new programs, community involvement, or collaboration with corporations and industry
  • Streamline our organization, physical plant, and operating processes
  • Strengthen the Pepperdine University "brand" and reputation


Participation is easy.

Simply fill out a short form and share your idea (or ideas). Successful submissions will be eligible to move into Phase I and receive development grants to help them take their proposals to the next level of completion. Phase II winners will receive additional funding to facilitate expansion and implementation of selected concepts.

The process is fun and rewarding

Submit your idea by October 15, 2016, and help make Pepperdine and the world better.

Apply here

Applications for Waves of Innovation III are due by October 15, 2016.

 Waves of Innovation III

Waves of Innovation III - Phase I Finalists

Dr. Lee Kats, chair of the Waves of Innovation committee, would like to announce on behalf of the Office of the President, the 2016-2017 Waves of Innovation III, Phase I finalists. Ninety-five applications were read by the Waves of Innovation committee and a short list was sent to President Benton who selected the following six finalists to participate in Phase II of the application process and compete for a full implementation grant.

The six phase I finalists will have access to a development grant of up to $4000 and will prepare a complete application form and a TED-style talk, or Waves of Innovation Talk, which is scheduled on April 19, 2017, at 7 PM in Smothers Theater. The projects selected for Phase II are as follows.

Pepperdine pre-IPO Market – Prof. Robert Anderson (School of Law) with Prof. Levon Goukasian (Business Administration Division, Seaver College) and Prof. Maretno Augus Harjoto (Accounting and Finance, Graziadio School of Business and Management)

          We propose to create a tournament and simulated trading platform around the pricing of initial public offerings (IPOs). Our tournament, tentatively called the "Pepperdine pre‐IPO Market," will entail a computer‐based simulated trading platform that will allow Pepperdine students, faculty, staff, and anyone around the world to compete in a simulated "stock market" in which they trade the shares of companies with pending IPOs. Our project will enhance our students' learning through pricing a stock that has yet not traded in the open market. It will also generate valuable research insights, attract substantial favorable media coverage, and expand the Pepperdine brand into new geographic regions and industries. In addition, the project will provide our students with an unparalleled opportunity to apply business and finance learning in "real time" as actual IPOs progress from the initial stages through listing on a stock exchange.

PSA1: Outside the White Cube – Prof. Gretchen Batcheller with Prof. Ty Pownall and Prof. Cynthia Colburn (Seaver College Fine Arts Division)

          The Pepperdine Art Department would use a Waves of Innovation Grant to purchase and modify a 24' box truck into a mobile art gallery. The mobile gallery will be referred to as Pepperdine Studio Art Hwy 1 Mobile Gallery or "PSA1". PSA 1 is a play on the Museum of Modern Art PS1, which is one of the most important cultural institutions dedicated to contemporary art practices. Located in Queens, New York City, PS1 is situated in an old public school building that was rehabilitated into a contemporary exhibition space. The Pepperdine Art Department proposes to do the very same with a box truck, creating a student‐centered mobile gallery space for special projects. The mobile gallery would provide benefits to Pepperdine, our students and the local community and beyond. Instead of the community coming to Pepperdine, we will take Pepperdine out into the community.

Superior Scholarship Through Embedded Collaborative Partnering – Prof. Anthony Collatos with Prof. Jodi Council (Graduate School of Education and Psychology)

          Advancing superior scholarship through embedded collaborative partnerships represents a substantive innovation opportunity for Pepperdine's Graduate School of Education. The identification and establishment of embedded collaborative partners can provide opportunities for Pepperdine students to expand their academic scholarship through unique experiential learning, provide a consistent and reliable pool of applicants to Pepperdine and GSEP, while establishing broad‐based community involvement in communities most representative of Pepperdine's immediate geography.

Equipping the Next Wave of Values-Centered Leaders: A Government, Industry and University Partnership Providing Ongoing Certification for Executives and Alumni in Risk Management and Cybersecurity – Prof. Charla Griffy-Brown (Graziadio School of Business and Management) with Prof. Mark Chun (Executive Programs, Graziadio School) and Blake Withall (Online Programs, Graziadio School); Prof. Kent Rhodes (Organizational Leadership, Graduate School of Education and Psychology), and other industry partners

          There are few issues facing business and government leaders today that pose a greater risk than cybersecurity. In 2016, the estimated global cost of cyber‐attacks was US $400 billion with a projected cost of US$2.1 trillion dollars by 2019. Cybersecurity plays a role in global politics, economics, social justice, and even terrorism. A critical need exists to develop business and government leaders who include risk analysis in all aspects of their decision‐making in order to create a safer world. Importantly these issues are much more than "an IT problem" and can only be addressed effectively through leadership. Executives are discovering that they must be educated in this area to ensure their organizations are successful. This proposal is a unique partnership between government, industry, and the academy to address this growing concern. It not only fills an identified educational gap, but also provides a unique agile instructional and resource design connected to the marketplace to ensure sustainability, ongoing real‐time curricular development, and scalability. We propose the development of a series of certifications related to cyber security and risk management designed and delivered through this unique university partnership with government and industry.

The Roots Project: Sustainable Food Management – Levi Osburn (Seaver College, Student) with Prof. Chris Doran (Religion Division), Prof. Ty C. Robbins (Social Science Division), Prof. Stephen Davis (Natural Sciences Division), Randy Penwell (Pepperdine Dining Services), Angie Pedersen (Workers' Compensation and Wellness Program, Human Resources), Carly Mischke (Facilities Services), James Lockhart (Support Services, Facilities Services), Rhiannon Bailard & Emily Mead (Governmental & Regulatory Affairs; Center for Sustainability), and Hannah Dewalt (Health and Wellness Education/Counseling Center)

          The Roots Project is an application offering Pepperdine a chance to deliberately curb waste production on campus, care deeply for how our community affects the soil and food, and show the world that our mission inspires purposeful action. America leads the world in food waste, where over 30% of food produced never gets eaten. The most ecologically responsible method of food disposal is composting, which allows organic waste to return to the Earth. The Roots Project proposes funding a modern in‐vessel composting system, along with the necessary infrastructure to make this regeneration happen at our university. Aimed first at the kitchen and Cafeteria conveyor belt, the main capture points, would allow retention and generation of nutritious compost material within a week from our food scraps. Pepperdine has an opportunity to actively address food from a lifecycle perspective, and introduce a sustainable plan where you'd least expect it, disposal, and then creating change all the way through production and consumption.

The Genesis Lab: Bringing Ideas to Life – Landon Phillips (Information Technology Division, Staff) with Paul Stenis (Librarian for Instructional Design, Pepperdine Libraries)

          The Genesis Lab will be a place where ambitious students and faculty from a variety of disciplines can gather to form fledgling businesses, build apps, start non‐profits, design curricula, and much more. The Genesis Lab will house tools that encourage tinkering, innovation, and creativity such as 3D printers, laser cutters, VR headsets, data visualization tools, and much more. These kinds of tools exemplify the maker movement but aren't specific to a discipline or ideology, making them prime candidates for multidisciplinary projects. The lab will enable students to step confidently into the world beyond Pepperdine. It will provide a platform for teaching and learning new skills, provide new blueprints for community outreach, and yield concrete examples of ingenuity. These takeaways will not only demonstrate the high‐quality education students receive at Pepperdine but improve their prospects after graduation. Part maker space, part lab, and part social hub, the garage will leverage Pepperdine's strongest assets – our passion for innovation and social justice – into concrete, physical and digital artifacts.

 Congratulations and thank you to each of the faculty, staff, and students who shared an idea to make Pepperdine even better.

Submissions of proposals are welcome anytime for future rounds of Waves of Innovation. Please contact us with questions innovation@pepperdine.eduor call the Office of the Vice Provost for Research and Strategic Initiatives at 310-506-4501.