Technical and Policy Advisor
Economic Development Administration, DOCEric Paul Smith currently serves as Senior Policy Advisor in the Office of Innovation and Entrepreneurship (OIE) at the Economic Development Administration (EDA), a bureau of the Department of Commerce (DOC). Eric leads a number of initiatives for the National Advisory Council on Innovation and Entrepreneurship (NACIE), including its SBIR/STTR and other lab-to-market initiatives. He manages the development and execution of OIE’s Regional Innovation Strategies (RIS) Program grant competition and of DOC’s Open for Innovation (O4I) initiative, while also providing intellectual property expertise and representing EDA and OIE in a variety of interagency and external initiatives that support innovators and entrepreneurs throughout the country.
Prior to serving in this position, Eric had been detailed to OIE as Technical & Policy Advisor from the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO), where he had served as a Patent Examiner focused on telecommunications technologies. He also helped lead his unit’s transition to a new, US-EU joint patent classification system. Prior to government service, he practiced as in-house legal counsel in the fintech sector, where he focused on software licensing, from pre-sales to implementation services to maintenance, as well as on revenue management and recognition and on legal process management. Eric received his J.D. from the Indiana University Maurer School of Law and his B.S. in computer science and mathematics, along with a technical translation certificate in German, from the Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology. He is licensed to practice in the State of New York.