Center for Gaming Innovation at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas

In 2013, the University of Nevada, Las Vegas (UNLV) International Gaming Institute was awarded $500,000 from the Knowledge Fund to create the Center for Gaming Innovation (CGI). CGI boasts a team of industry-leading experts in gaming intellectual property (IP) innovation to focus specifically on the creation of new gaming IP designed to deliver state-of-the-art experiences to new and existing customers. In doing so, the CGI will serve Nevada’s largest industry and key Nevada businesses by acting as an incubator for talent and products. It will also provide the gaming industry with an educational hub for mentorship, university-based teaching, applied research and workforce development.

The Knowledge Fund grant to CGI will focus on the dramatic expansion of a gaming innovation program that is already being taught at the undergraduate and graduate levels at UNLV. CGI will act as a clearinghouse, evaluator and mentor to those in academic industry and community settings with patentable ideas in game design. These inventors often lack the expertise and funds to go through the math, design and patent processes that are crucial to game design, as well as the knowledge necessary to navigate the lengthy regulatory and IP process. These barriers significantly limit the innovation entrepreneurs can bring to the gaming industry. CGI will help entrepreneurs and new companies get through these barriers to actualize their success.

At the state level, CGI addresses key strategic needs for Nevada and its research infrastructure. The Center is a direct response to Governor Brian Sandoval’s economic development agenda, and will help cement the State’s status as the “global intellectual capital” of gaming. On the research and development side, CGI will help people and organizations obtain patents, which are highly-valued in university research ranking systems. In gaming, content has always been king, but never has it been more crucial than it is today, and CGI will provide the content that will serve as an economic development engine for new, existing and expanding Nevada companies.

CGI’s Application & Progress Reports


CGI Helps Bring 20 Students to Entrepreneurial Success

Center for Gaming Innovation (CGI) will support two unique educational and entrepreneurial experiences – one for on-campus undergraduate and graduate students in gaming management, and one through a new Gaming Innovation Certificate  program for Nevada residents and industry employees. Even prior to becoming a Knowledge Fund program in fall 2013, CGI gave 20 fortunate student-entrepreneurs the opportunity to develop ideas while being mentored by leading industry experts like Joe Kaminkow (the most successful slot machine designer in recent history), Roger Snow (the most successful table games designer in recent history), and Dr. Mark Yoseloff (former CEO of Shuffle Master and developer of more than 320 patents). The CGI also offers students and entrepreneurs the knowledge of internationally recognized experts in casino mathematics and gaming operations. In the end, GOED has watched with pride as the CGI has grown into a flourishing university-industry partnership that enhances the educational experience of Nevada’s next generation of gaming industry leaders. Read more (ABC News).

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