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Mar 08, 2011



Ken Gabriel had a similar setup in Pittsburgh while at CMU. State funding went through the MEMS department and ended up at his company, Akustica. He collected salaries from the company and the univ. at the same time. His title and position helped him land this funding, and that was coupled with a large amount of private angel and venture financing.

Akustica burned through over $77m in nine years before being "acquired" (for a fraction of the above...approx. $4-6m) by Bosch (which also is a big supporter of CMU and apparently did him and the school a favor as the company certainly would have went bankrupt). After the CEO and other staff was fired and used as scapegoats, before Bosch came in, he suddenly disappeared and ended up at DARPA due to his close relationship with Dugan. He certainly needed a job after Akustica but somehow managed to avoid the Akustica blow up. To date none of his startups have been successful. The only one in business is the "MEMS Industry Group" he founded and was seeded with money from....DARPA (AFTER he worked there the first time...)

The conflicts of interest in academia and what is mentioned here pales in comparison when realizing that the government funding also ends up in projects that include foreign nationals on the payroll, masters and Phd engineering and science students, who very openly transfer the tech and know how overseas. Federal and state government money funding these projects that violate conflict of interest and self-dealing rules is one thing, but when they also greatly expose the US to serious national security risks, someone needs to take notice...and action.

Would be interested to hear more from former DARPA program managers who worked there while he was there....


Business as usual, same dealings with Cheeney and Rumsfeld. The revolving door between public and private sectors...many politicians are involved in these cost ++ no bid gov. contracts.Politicians like Nascar drivers should wear patches on their suits with the logos of the corporations they support and show the whores that they truly are.


Ken Gabriel is blowing smoke. I was a program manager at DARPA. The truth is, ALL program and funding decisions reach the level of the Director and Deputy Director.

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