Robin Johnston

Director of Commercialization

Robin Johnston manages JBEI industry interactions and intellectual property, which includes setting JBEI’s strategic course for technology transfer and partnerships, negotiating licenses and collaborative research terms, and incubating startups. She also works with Berkeley Lab’s Biosciences Area leadership in planning and executing strategic industry engagements for the Area. She is a frequent speaker and judge for cleantech entrepreneurship events and competitions.

In her previous position as Berkeley Lab’s Deputy Chief Technology Transfer Officer, Ms. Johnston oversaw day-to-day IP management and licensing activities for the Innovation and Partnerships Office (IPO). In addition, she managed IPO’s entrepreneurship programs, including Energy I-Corps, Lab-Bridge, and the Berkeley Lab Innovation Corps. In her previous role at JBEI, she developed and executed a strategic plan for technology transfer and partnerships that resulted in JBEI exceeding the top three US universities in inventions and licenses, per funding dollar. Ms. Johnston also worked with the UC Berkeley Haas School of Business to create the Cleantech to Market (C2M) program, which was piloted at Berkeley Lab and later adopted by Haas as a formal course. C2M is a partnership between graduate students, entrepreneurs, researchers, and energy professionals to accelerate the commercialization of emerging cleantech and train the next generation of cleantech leaders.

Her work history includes experience in conflict mediation and reporting on science, technology and the environment for The Christian Science Monitor. She has an undergraduate degree in Chemistry from the University of Virginia and a graduate degree in Science, Technology, and Public Policy from The George Washington University.