UW-Stout Center for Innovation and Development

Working to help you get your idea to market.

Improve Your Idea

♦ Get an objective assessment of the viability of your product or idea.
♦ Getting input early helps you make the most of improvements or decide not to move forward. Either way saves you time and money.
♦ Rapidly assess the market viability of your idea.
♦ If the idea has promise, we have a host of services and connections for you.


Communicate Your Idea

You must be able to communicate your idea to others.  Most product ideas are better communicated with a model, prototype or digital design and graphics.

You Make It
After some training, you can gain access to the UW-Stout Digital Fabrication Lab, a lab where digital designs become real objects through the use of laser cutters, rapid prototyping machines, routers, plasma cutters, mills and other computer driven machines.

We Make It
We can do the building for you for a quoted fee.

Conceptual Model Development
This is a non-functioning model used mainly to help you communicate your idea.

Functional Prototype Development
This is a prototype that performs the function. Often, several generations are required.

Regardless of who makes your model, our materials and manufacturing experience will improve your product and make it more cost effective to produce.


Commercialize Your Idea

Our counselors utilize tools from GrowthWheel® to assess your current status in the commercialization process, then help you make decisions and take action to establish your business. The GrowthWheel® system walks you through the four key areas that every business needs to succeed:
    ♦ Business Concept
    ♦ Customer Relations
    ♦ Operations
    ♦ Organization

Connections to Wisconsin Manufacturers
Often, the best way to bring a product to market involves an existing manufacturer. UW-Stout's Manufacturing Outreach Center works with an average of 135 Wisconsin manufacturing companies each year, improving their operations with average annual impacts of $35 million. We know who to call for manufacturing.
UW-Stout Manufacturing Outreach Center

When your business idea is ready, the CID can refer you to skilled marketing resources who will highlight the uniqueness and benefits of your product offerings for specific customers.

Technology Licensing
The CID works with WiSys Technology Foundation as a resource to provide intellectual property protection. 

Wisys Logo

If your needs are outside our core skills, we will connect you to other skilled service providers. It is our firm belief that PEOPLE WORKING TOGETHER ACHIEVE MORE!



Contact Information

University of Wisconsin-Stout

Center for Innovation & Development
Discovery Center
278 Jarvis Hall, 410 10th Avenue E
Menomonie, WI 54751

Email: cid@uwstout.edu


Aunt K's Natural Powders

Discovery Center helps new business bring products to market. > Read more.

Eau Claire Area EDC Grand Prize Winner

[UW-Stout CID] has been very helpful assisting me in developing presentations to prospective manufacturers and lincensees.  ...also helped me with strategic planning, where to best focus my energy and how to make industry contacts.

~ John Gustafson, inventor of the Thor Mini Quick-Tach

Buvala Fence Cart

Discovery Center, class helps farmer save 30%. > Read more.

Cold Weather Driving Solution

[UW-Stout CID] knew where to find material that we could use and how much manufacturing things would cost. They listened to Norbert's knowledge of trucking and applied it to making the proper working prototype.

~ Alice & Norbert Schuster, Frozen Brake Indicator inventors

Useful Tools

Strategyzer tools you can use for free to improve your business idea.