At Stanford University since 1995, Professor Tom Byers focuses on education regarding principled entrepreneurship and responsible technology innovation. He is the first holder of the Entrepreneurship Professorship endowed chair in the School of Engineering and a Bass University Fellow in Undergraduate Education. He has been a faculty director since the inception of the Stanford Technology Ventures Program (STVP), which serves as the entrepreneurship center for the School of Engineering including its Mayfield Fellows Program, Accel Leadership Program, Stanford eCorner, and its applied ethics project. He has also been a key advisor to the Hacking for Defense and Hacking for Climate projects to better connect entrepreneurship education with national security and sustainability challenges. In the past, he hosted 50 Roundtables on Entrepreneurship Education (REE) on five continents over 15 years. Tom is a lead author of the Technology Ventures: From Idea to Enterprise textbook from McGraw-Hill, now in its 5th edition.

Tom is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations and the Board of Trustees at Menlo College. His service on advisory boards includes Harvard Business School and Conservation International. In the past, Tom was a visiting professor at London Business School, University College London, Duke University, and UNC-Chapel Hill. He was a recipient of the prestigious Gordon Prize by the National Academy of Engineering in the USA and Stanford University's Gores Award, which is their highest honor for excellence in teaching. Tom was executive vice president and general manager of Symantec Corporation during its formation and started his career at Accenture. Tom holds a BS in Industrial Engineering and Operations Research and an MBA from UC Berkeley. He also earned a PhD in Business Administration (Management Science) at UC Berkeley.

Administrative Appointments

  • Faculty Director, Stanford Technology Ventures Program (STVP) (1995 - 2024)
  • PI, Office of Naval Research's Hacking for Defense Project (2017 - 2024)
  • Director and lead PI, NSF's National Center for Engineering Pathways to Innovation (Epicenter) (2011 - 2017)

Honors & Awards

  • Keohane Distinguished Visiting Professor, Duke University and University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill (2018-2021)
  • Department Undergraduate Teaching Award, Management Science and Engineering, Stanford University (2015)
  • Engineering Entrepreneurship Pioneer Award, American Society of Engineering Educators (ASEE) (2015)
  • Entrepreneurship Professorship in the School of Engineering (endowed chair), Stanford University (2013-present)
  • Gordon Prize, National Academy of Engineering (NAE) (2009)
  • Olympus Innovation Award, VentureWell (2007)
  • Entrepreneurship Educator of the Year Award, United States Association for Small Business and Entrepreneurship (USASBE) (2005)
  • Gores Award, Stanford University (2005)
  • Kauffman Award, American Society of Engineering Education (ASEE) (2005)
  • Bass University Fellow in Undergraduate Education, Stanford University (2002-present)
  • Tau Beta Pi Award, School of Engineering, Stanford University (2002)
  • Innovation in Pedagogy Award, Entrepreneurship Division, Academy of Management (1998)

Boards, Advisory Committees, Professional Organizations

  • Member, Council on Foreign Relations (2021 - Present)
  • Advisory Board, Stanford President’s Ethics, Society and Technology Hub (2019 - 2023)
  • Faculty Advisors, Stanford's Distinguished Careers Institute (DCI) (2018 - 2023)
  • Program Advisory Committee, Stanford Committee on Bing Overseas Studies Program (BOSP) (2018 - 2023)
  • Board of Trustees, Menlo College (2017 - Present)
  • Leadership Council, Conservation International (2009 - Present)
  • Advisory Board, Harvard Business School’s California Research Center (2000 - Present)

Program Affiliations

  • Science, Technology and Society

Professional Education

  • BS, UC Berkeley, Industrial Engineering and Operations Research (1975)
  • MBA, Haas School of Business, UC Berkeley, Business Administration (1980)
  • PhD, Haas School of Business, UC Berkeley, Business Administration (Management Science) (1982)

Current Research and Scholarly Interests

Applied ethics, responsible innovation, and global entrepreneurship education (see


  • Principled Entrepreneurial Action and Knowledge (PEAK) project: applied ethics and technology innovation, Stanford University


    Stanford CA

  • Hacking for Defense sponsored project for the Office of Naval Research: entrepreneurship and national security, Stanford Univerisity (9/1/2017)

    Supported by ONR, Hacking for Defense (H4D) is a university-sponsored class that allows students to develop a deep understanding of the problems and needs of government sponsors in the US Department of Defense and the Intelligence Community. In a short time, students rapidly iterate prototypes and produce solutions to sponsors' needs. For universities, it keeps their programs attached to real-world problems and provides students with an experiential opportunity to become more effective in their chosen field, with a body of work to back it up. For government agencies, it allows problem sponsors to increase the speed at which their organization solves specific, mission-critical problems. This project helped spread the curricula to over 40 colleges in the US and its national security allies by 2021.


    Huang Engineering Center

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  • National Center for Engineering Pathways to Innovation (Epicenter) for National Science Foundation, Stanford University

    Epicenter was funded by the National Science Foundation from 2011 to 2016 and directed by Stanford University. Epicenter's mission was to empower U.S. undergraduate engineering students to bring their ideas to life for the benefit of our economy and society. Epicenter offered faculty, students, researchers and academic leaders engaging ways to support entrepreneurship and innovation learning in undergraduate engineering education. Each of these three programs has continued after Epicenter's National Science Foundation funding ended in 2016. Visit to learn more.


    Stanford, California USA


    • Sheri Sheppard, Professor, Stanford University

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Stanford Advisees

All Publications

  • Entrepreneurs and the Truth Harvard Business Review Jensen, K., Byers, T., Dunham, L., Fjeld, J. 2021; 99 (4): 124-131
  • Empowering Future Engineers with Ethical Thinking The Bridge: 50th Anniversary Issue Byers, T. H., et al 2020; 50 (S)
  • Entrepreneurship and Innovation in Engineering Education Advances in Engineering Education Byers, T., et al 2016; 5 (1)
  • Entrepreneurship: Its Role in Undergraduate Education The Bridge Byers, T., et al 2013; 43 (2)
  • Entrepreneurship Education in Asia Foreword ENTREPRENEURSHIP EDUCATION IN ASIA Byers, T., Thomas, H., Kelley, D. 2011: XI-XII