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The RISN Incubator

The RISN Incubator is a niche business accelerator for entrepreneurs in the early stages of waste-to-product innovation with the goal of moving a Circular Economy in the Phoenix area forward further and faster.

From Arizona State University, the nation’s Top University for Innovation, and the City of Phoenix, the Top Performing City overall by Governing and Living Cities, the RISN Incubator provides ventures an opportunity to rapidly scale and transform your startup into a vehicle to solve some of the world’s greatest challenges.

The RISN Incubator will help you TEST your concepts, BUILD your company and SCALE to market.

The RISN Incubator will provide:

  • dedicated expert mentors to guide advancement.
  • unmatched strategic advisement.
  • introductions to industry stakeholders.
  • access to technical experts in the field of material reuse, technology and the circular economy.
  • business trainings on topics related to building a cost and revenue model, operations, value proposition, understanding your customers and more.
  • waste from the City of Phoenix for use in the development, testing and activation of a product or service.
  • a process for entrepreneurs and their ventures to be continuously evaluated and pre-qualified for funding opportunities.

The RISN Incubator is the latest program of the Resource Innovation and Solutions Network – or RISN, a collaboration between Arizona State University and the city of Phoenix. RISN was initially created to generate value, economic opportunity and jobs from the resources available in the waste stream.

Circular economy is a closed loop model that sees all resources and energy as renewable and regenerative, where all durable resources are endlessly cycled back into supply chains, and waste is minimized.

The impacts of RISN begin with increased local and regional collaboration, waste aversion, diversion and better use of diverted material. These initiatives are focused on economic development outcomes: creation and growth of firms and jobs. To support this movement, the City of Phoenix is developing a Resource Innovation Campus on which RISN and the Incubator will be headquartered.

RISN’s role is to bring together university, regional government, business and non-governmental partners to transform the relationship between resources, the environment, people and the economy. The goal is to implement sustainable solutions that create a resource-focused circular economy platform that makes urban areas healthier, more livable, resilient and efficient.

The Review Process:

1. Submissions will be reviewed by RISN Incubator staff and a selection committee comprised of circular economy entrepreneurship and innovation experts, investors, ASU faculty, technical experts and more.
2. Early stage ventures may be invited to participate in the Design Challenge, with the winner(s) invited to join the RISN Incubator. Promising startup companies that are further along may be invited to join the RISN Incubator directly. Interviews may be requested at any time during the review process.
3. All submissions will be provided feedback.


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About the RISN Incubator


The RISN Incubator is staffed by the Walton Sustainability Solutions Initiatives and the office of Entrepreneurship + Innovation at Arizona State University, named Most Innovative University in America by US News & World Report for two years running.

Alicia Marseille
Director, Resource Innovation & Solutions Network Incubator
Ji Mi Choi
Associate Vice President, Office of Knowledge Enterprise Development
Thomas Seager
Senior Sustainability Scientist, Julie Ann Wrigley Global Institute of Sustainability
Lincoln Fellow of Ethics and Sustainability, School of Sustainable Engineering and the Built Environment, Ira A. Fulton Schools of Engineering
Associate Professor, School of Sustainable Engineering and the Built Environment, Ira A. Fulton Schools of Engineering
Mara DeFilippis
Project Engagement Manager, Global Sustainability Solutions Services, Walton Sustainability Solutions Initaitives
Jessica Groeneveld
Project Coordinator, Global Sustainability Solutions Services, Walton Sustainability Solutions Initiatives


For more information about how the RISN Incubator can help to move your idea forward, email or call 480-727-RISN.

The RISN Incubator was seed funded by a $500,000 grant from the Department of Commerce, Economic Development Administration through the 2016 i6 Challenge. Additional funding and support is provided by the City of Phoenix, ASU Entrepreneurship + Innovation and ASU Walton Sustainability Solutions Services.