Rice Alliance

The Rice Alliance for Technology and Entrepreneurship (Rice Alliance) is Rice University’s nationally-recognized initiative devoted to the support of technology commercialization, entrepreneurship education, and the launch of technology companies. It was formed as a strategic alliance of three schools: the George R. Brown School of Engineering, the Wiess School of Natural Sciences and the Jesse H. Jones Graduate School of Business in collaboration with the Vice Provost and the Office of Research.

The Rice Alliance is a catalyst for building successful ventures through education, guidance and connections. Its mission is to support the creation of technology-based companies and the commercialization of new technologies in the Houston community and Southwest.

Since its inception in 2000, more than 2,500 companies have participated in over 2,675 Rice Alliance programs and have raised more than $8.1 billion in early-stage capital. More than 50,680 individuals have attended Rice Alliance events and over 30,000 individuals subscribe to the Rice Alliance Digest newsletter.

The Rice Business Plan Competition is the World’s Richest and Largest, awarding more than $21.8 million in prizes since 2001. Over 237 past competitors are in business today or successfully exited having raised nearly $2.675 billion in capital and and over $1.23 billion in exit dollars.

OwlSpark, Rice University's Accelerator, was founded in 2012 to ignite a passion for entrepreneurship within the Rice community. OwlSpark provides hands-on entrepreneurship experiences and a roadmap from innovation to commercialization. The program has served 63 startups and more than 159 entrepreneurs. Of those, 48% are still active, and have raised over $24M in funding.

Recent recognition:

  • 2019 #1 Best U.S. Graduate Entrepreneurship Program - Princeton Review and Entrepreneur Magazine
  • 2019 #11 Best MBA Entrepreneurship Program - Global Ranking - Poets and Quants
  • 2019, 2018, 2017, 2016, 2015, 2014, 2013, 2012, 2011, 2010, 2009 Top 10 Best U.S. Graduate Entrepreneurship Program – Princeton Review and Entrepreneur magazine
  • 2016, 2015, 2014, 2013, 2012, 2011 Top 15 Best U.S. Graduate Entrepreneurship Program – US News & World Report
  • 2014, 2013 #1 Global University Business Incubator (UBI Index)
  • 2013 Top 20 Global Entrepreneurship Programs (BusinessWeek International)
  • 2013 #1 Global EMBA (Financial Times)
  • 2012 #7 Best College for Aspiring Entrepreneurs (Huffington Post and Unigo)
  • 2012, 2009 Marketer of the Year – American Marketing Association
  • 2011 National Model MBA Entrepreneurship Program – USASBE
  • 2009 Outstanding Center for Entrepreneurial Leadership - GCEC
  • 2009 Outstanding Technology Entrepreneurship Program – USASBE
  • 2008 Houston’s Greatest Economic Development Ally – Greater Houston Partnership

Our Team

Brad Burke
Managing Director, Rice Alliance for Technology and Entrepreneurship