Bob Gemmell is scholar-practitioner with more than 25 years of business operating experience as a semiconductor chip designer, senior executive, intrapreneur, entrepreneur, marketing consultant, CEO and angel investor. Gemmell’s last operating position was as Chairman and CEO of wireless IoT pioneer Cirronet, Inc. Cirronet was acquired in 2006 and Gemmell continued to manage the business as division President and Executive Director until October 2010.
Gemmell received BS and MS degrees in electrical engineering (summa cum laude) from Georgia Tech and an MBA from Duke University. He was inducted into the Georgia Tech Academy of Distinguished Engineering Alumni in 2003 for his contributions to digital communications technology. Gemmell was involved early on in Georgia Tech’s ATDC incubator, joining as an entrepreneur-in-residence in 1988, and launched a major faculty tech transfer program in 1992 that is now called Venture Labs.
Following his lengthy operating career, Gemmell decided to pursue academia as a full-time “second career” and completed his Ph.D. from Case Western Reserve University’s Weatherhead School of Management in 2012.
His research agenda is focused primarily on entrepreneurial learning and innovation, including two recently published journal articles: “Learning Styles of Entrepreneurs in Knowledge-Intensive Industries” (special issue of International Journal of Entrepreneurial Behavior & Research on Entrepreneurial Learning, 2017) and “Learning Behaviors Across Levels in New Ventures and Innovation Outcomes” (Journal of Small Business Management, 2019).
Gemmell began his teaching career at Georgia State University in 2008 and was Director of Georgia State University’s Russell Center for Entrepreneurship from 2011 to 2014. He took a leave of absence from GSU and served as a Visiting Assistant Professor at Wake Forest University, teaching strategy, organizational behavior and entrepreneurship from 2014 to 2016.
Gemmell then returned to Georgia Tech as a Professor of the Practice and Executive Director for the TI:GER entrepreneurship and tech transfer program from 2016 to 2019, focusing especially on advising student teams. Teams that Gemmell coached were consistently successful in major international business plan competitions, including the prestigious Rice Business plan competition, in which one team won more than $100,000, and TYE, where teams he advised swept the regional competition and won the global competition. Gemmell is currently on the faculty at Rice University, teaching both strategy and organizational behavior in its online MBA program.