Boston Innovation Center


Cambridge Innovation Center

The Greater Boston region continues to expand its biotechnology presence through the establishment of new biotechnology companies and creation of new jobs. The local biopharm industry is comprised of more than 500 companies and 49,000+ employees, a twenty percent increase since 2007. Massachusetts is home to the greatest number and concentration of biotechnology research employees in the United States.

Our Boston Innovation Center will build relationships with the academic institutions, biotech organizations and venture capital firms in the Greater Boston area and will be a base for outreach throughout the East Coast of the United States.

Robert Urban, Ph.D.
Robert Urban, Ph.D.

Head of Johnson & Johnson Innovation Center, Boston

Robert Urban joined the Johnson & Johnson Family of Companies in November 2012 to lead the Boston Innovation Center. Robert and his team focus on identifying, shaping, and on-boarding the most promising science and technology opportunities at universities, academic centers and small biotech companies in the Greater Boston Area and on the East Coast, with the goals of catalyzing early-stage innovation, bringing transformative medical solutions, and driving growth for Johnson & Johnson.

Robert was most recently the founding Executive Director of the Koch Institute for Integrative Cancer Research since its launch in 2007. In this leadership role, Robert worked to build the Koch Institute into a leading interdisciplinary disease-focused research institution via an expanding, highly effective, relationship network with other academic oncology centers, industrial partners, and cancer-focused philanthropists and investors. Since its launch, the Koch Institute has been the source of seventeen start-up companies and its technology has been the subject of over 50 out-licensing transactions.

Prior to his role at the Koch Institute, Robert was President and CEO of Acretia Inc—a product acquisition and out-licensing company that he co-founded. Robert built the Acretia team and business, which during his tenure, conducted technical due diligence on more than 280 product opportunities and completed the acquisition of three distinct product lines.

Robert has also held a variety of business development and clinical development roles in the pharmaceutical industry. He has worked in the areas of oncology, inflammation infectious disease, vaccines and chronic pain. His experience includes clinical product development, operations oversight, licensing and acquisitions, capital fund raising, company creation, and building relationships with key thought-leaders.

Robert is the author of more than 35 peer-reviewed publications in leading journals and is an inventor on four issued patents. He received his Bachelor degree in Microbiology and his Ph.D. in Microbiology and Immunology from University of Texas system, and was the Irvington Postdoctoral Fellow in structural immunology at Harvard University.