James Conley
James Gerard Conley

MANAGERIAL ECONOMICS & DECISION SCIENCES
Clinical Professor of Technology
Co-Director, JDMBA Program

Print Overview

James Conley serves on the faculty of both the Kellogg School of Management and the McCormick School of Engineering at Northwestern University. He is a faculty contributor in the Kellogg Center for Research in Technology & Innovation and serves as a Faculty Fellow at the Segal Design Institute (NU IDEA). At Present, he is also serving as a Visiting Professor in the chair of technology and innovation management at the WHU in Germany.

Beyond Northwestern, he served as an appointed member on the United States Department of Commerce Trademark Public Advisory Committee to the Patent and Trademark Office and is a Charter Fellow of the National Academy of Inventors.

His research investigates the strategic use of intangible assets and intellectual properties to build and sustain competitive advantage. Research sponsors include the National Science Foundation, NASA, FAA, NIST, the Department of Defense, Motorola, Daimler-Chrysler, the OECD and others.

Professor Conley teaches courses on Innovation Process Management, Intellectual Capital Management, and other related subjects to both graduate student and executive education audiences. Beyond Kellogg and Northwestern, he serves on the visiting faculty of Kellogg partner institutions such as the Otto Beisheim Graduate School of Management at the WHU in GERMANY, the Schulich School of Business at York University in CANADA, and at the Keio University Business School in JAPAN.

In both 2004 and 2007, he received the Professor of the Year award from the Master of Product Development program at Northwestern University.

He served as the General Electric Foundation Professor and the Pentair-Nugent Professor of Manufacturing and Business Leadership from 1994 to 2000. Additionally, his publications have been recognized with “Best Paper” commendations from the American Foundry Society, the Society of Automotive Engineers, The Rapid Prototyping Journal and others. Mainstream outlets for his scholarship include the Wall Street Journal and Sloan Management Review.

Professor Conley’s scholarship is informed by professional practice. In 1994, he founded Syndia Corporation together with the late Jerome Lemelson and entrepreneur Roger Hickey. In addition to being an inventor (7 issued US patents and others pending), Conley through Syndia has grown and acquired a portfolio of intellectual properties that Syndia licenses to many entities in Asia, North America and Europe. Additionally, he served as a Principal at Chicago Partners, LLC.

Before joining Northwestern in 1994, he spent seven years at the Ryobi Limited Group of companies in JAPAN with management responsibility in product engineering and product development. There, he led substantial Ryobi product innovation programs for both automotive and consumer durable products. He is conversational in the Japanese language.

He is happily married to his kindergarten classmate Sally and they have 5 children.



Areas of Expertise
Intellectual Property (Biotechnology)
Brands and Trademarks
Information Technology
Innovation
Intellectual Property
New Product Development
Strategy
Technology
Print Vita
Education
MBA, 1992, Kellogg School of Management, Northwestern University
PhD, 1987, Materials Engineering, Northwestern University
BS, 1983, Nuclear Engineering, University of Virginia

Academic Positions
Faculty Member, Kellogg International Executive MBA Programs, Otto Recanati IEMBA/HTMS Programs, Tel Aviv University, Tel Aviv, Israel, 2001-present
Faculty Member, Kellogg International Executive MBA Programs, Schulich School, York University, Toronto, Canada, 2001-present
Clinical Professor, Managerial Economics and Decision Sciences, Center for Research in Technology & Innovation, Kellogg School of Management, Northwestern University, 2000-present
Faculty Member, Mechanical Engineering, Segal Design Institute, McCormick School of Engineering and Applied Science, Northwestern University, 1994-present
Visiting Professor, Management, Otto Beisheim Graduate School of Management, WHU, 2008-2011
Visiting Professor, Management, Keio Business School, Keio University, 2002-2004

Grants and Awards
Charter Fellow, National Academy of Investors, 2013, ongoing
Recipient, Certificate of Impact, Kellogg, 2012, one quarter

 
Print Research
Research Interests
Sustainable competitive advantage in e-commerce, intellectual capital, intellectual property, product development, product design and engineering management

Articles
Orozco, David and James Gerard Conley. 2011. Friends of the court: Using Amicus Briefs to Identify Corporate Advocacy Positions in Supreme Court Patent Litigation. Journal of Law, Technology & Policy. 2: 101-122.
Lichtenthaler, Ulrich, Holger Ernst and James Gerard Conley. 2011. How to Develop a Successful Technology Licensing Program. MIT Sloan Management Review. 52(2): 15-16.
Conley, James Gerard, J. Duncan Berry, Laura DeWitt and Mark Dziersk. 2008. Inventing Brand: Opportunities at the Nexus of Semiotics and Intellectual Property. Design Management Review. 19(2)
Orozco, David and James Gerard Conley. 2007. The Longer Walk after e-Bay v. MercExchange. Les Nouvelles. 42(2): 426-431.
Bordas, Stephane, James Gerard Conley and Brian Moran. 2007. A Simulation-Based Design Paradigm for Complex Cast Components. Engineering with Computers. 23(1): 25-37.
Conley, James Gerard. 2005. Trademarks not Patents: The Real Competitive Advantage of the Apple iPod. Core77.
Conley, James Gerard and David Orozco. 2005. Intellectual Property: The Ground Rules.
Conley, James Gerard. 2005. Patents Come and Go - Trademarks are Forever. Executive Counsel. 2(2)
Conley, James Gerard. 2005. Manejando la propriedad intelectual en el mercado global. Estrategia y Negocios.
Conley, James Gerard. 2005. Using Brand Identity to Reinforce Market Value: The Competitive Edge. Innovation. 41: 15-18.
Conley, James Gerard. 2004. Game Over: Emulation and the Video Game Industry. Northwestern Journal of Technology and Intellectual Property. 2(2)
Conley, James Gerard. 2004. Managing IP in the Global Marketplace: Practitioners Perspective. Kellogg World.
Conley, James Gerard, D.D. Kaufman, Joseph T. Scarry. 2001. A Catalyst Role for an e-Marketplace in the Diecasting Industry. Linx Magazine.
Conley, James Gerard and John J. Szoboscan. 2001. Snow White Shows the Way. Managing Intellectual Property Magazine.
Conley, James Gerard, Vasiliki Demas and K.F. Packer. 2001. Experimental Design of a Microgravity Solidification Facility to Assist with Casting Simulation Verification. Transactions of the American Foundry Society. 109(01-022): 1-7.
Conley, James Gerard, Joseph T. Scarry. 2001. A Catalyst Model for Business to Business eCommerce in the Foundry Industry. Transactions of the American Foundry Society. 109
Seniw, Mark E., James Gerard Conley and Morris E. Fine. 2000. The effect of microscopic inclusion locations and silicon segregation on fatigue lifetimes of aluminum alloy A356 castings. Materials Science and Engineering. 285(1-2): 43-48.
Conley, James Gerard, Julie Huang, Jo Asada and Kenji Akiba. 2000. Modeling the Effects of Cooling Rate, Hydrogen Content, Grain Refiner and Modifier on Microporosity Formation in Al A356 Alloys. Materials Science and Engineering. 285(1-2): 49-55.
Conley, James Gerard, Y. N. Fan, Jerry Ying His Fuh, Henry W. Stoll. 2000. Towards Intelligent Setting of Process Parameters for Layered Manufacturing. Journal of Intelligent Manufacturing. 11(1): 65-74.
Conley, James Gerard, Vasiliki Demas, K. Diehl and T Kulak. 2000. Validation of Casting Process Simulation Using Analogue Materials in a Microgravity Environment. Transactions of the American Foundry Society. 108
Conley, James Gerard, Henry W. Stoll. 1999. Rapid Tooling for Sand Casting Using the Laminated Object Manufacturing Process. Rapid Prototyping Journal. 5(3): 134 - 141.
Conley, James Gerard, R Gustafson, Henry W. Stoll. 1999. Tool Path Selection for Sand Casting. Transactions of the American Foundry Society. 107
Conley, James Gerard. 1998. The Roybi "Air Clean" 4-Cycle Engine: A case Study in Engineering and Manufacturing Management. Engineering Management Journal. 10(2): 23-32.
Conley, James Gerard, Henry W. Stoll. 1998. Dimensional Variability Analysis in Post-Processing of Rapid Tooling.
Conley, James Gerard, Katsmi Kurihara and L.S. Suchdev. 1998. Emmisions Reduction of a Small 4-cycle Engine for Hand Held Trimmers.
Conley, James Gerard and Julie Huang. 1998. Computer Simulation of Pore Size and Shape and Shape for Equiaxed Aluminum Alloy Castings. Transactions of the American Foundry Society. 106
Conley, James Gerard, Joe Gray and Brian Moran. 1998. A New Paradigm for the Design of Safety Critical Castings. Journal of Materials and Manufacturing, SAE Transactions. 107
Conley, James Gerard. 1998. Rapid Tooling Error Analysis for Sand casting. Transactions of the American Foundry Society. 106
Huang, Julie, Paul Callau and James Gerard Conley. 1998. Alternative Methods for Porosity Prediction in Aluminum Alloys. Journal of Passenger Cars, SAE Transactions. 107
Huang, Julie, T. Mori and James Gerard Conley. 1998. Simulation of microporosity formation in modified and unmodified A356 alloy castings. Metallurgical and Materials Transactions B. 29(6): 1249-1260.
Conley, James Gerard. 1998. Stochastic Models for Manufacturing Systems.
Conley, James Gerard, Y. Imagawa, Katsmi Kurihara and Jens K. Olsen. 1997. Development of a Small 4-cycle Engine for Hand Held Trimmers. Japan Land Engine Manufacturers Association.
Conley, James Gerard, T. Kakuma and Katsmi Kurihara. 1997. An Experience of Management of International Project Team to Develop Extremely Small 4-Cycle Engine. Journal of Japanese R&D Consultants Association.
Conley, James Gerard, Y. Imagawa, Katsmi Kurihara and Jens K. Olsen. 1997. Development of Valve Train of Small 4-cycle Engine for Hand Held Power Equipment Applications. Japan Land Engine Manufacturers Association.
Conley, James Gerard and Katsmi Kurihara. 1997. Design Considerations for Overhead Valve Train in Small High Speed 4-cycle Engines.
Conley, James Gerard and Harris L. Marcus. 1997. Rapid Prototyping and Solid Free Form Fabrication. Journal of Manufacturing Science and Engineering. 119(4)
Conley, James Gerard. 1996. The Development of a Durable, Cost Effective, Overhead Valve Train for Application to Small, 4-cycle Engines. Journal of Engines, SAE Transactions. 105
Conley, James Gerard, Thomas Piwonka and J. Santner. 1996. Engineering Issues in the Use of Premium Quality Airframe Castings in Commercial Aviation.
Conley, James Gerard and D.M. Asher. 1996. Team Management Practices and Development of the AC 4-cycle Engine.
Conley, James Gerard. 1996. The New Ryobi 26.2 cc 4-cycle Engine for Hand Held Power Equipment Applications. Journal of Engines, SAE Transactions. 105
Conley, James Gerard. 1995. Experience with the Selection of Prototyping Techniques during the Rapid Development of a Commercial 4-cycle Engine.
Yamada, Takemasa, Hirotake Usui, Hiroki Tosa, Hiroshi Terauchi and James Gerard Conley. 1992. Experience with the Production of Cast Aluminum Alloy Engine Blocks by Low, Medium, and High Pressure Casting Processes. Journal of Engines, SAE Transactions. 101
Conley, James Gerard and Morris E. Fine. 1990. Discussion of "On the Free Energy of Formation of TiC and Al4C3". Metallurgical and Material Transactions A. 21(9): 2609-2610.
Conley, James Gerard, Morris E. Fine and Julia R. Weertman. 1989. Effect of Lattice Disregistry Variiation on the Late Stage Phase Transformation Behavior of Precipitates in Ni-Al-Mo Alloys. Acta Metallurgica. 37(4)
Conley, James Gerard, Morris E. Fine and Julia R. Weertman. 1988. Phase Transformation of Gamma Prime Precipitates in Ni-Al-Mo Alloys.
Conley, James Gerard, T. Miyoshi, H. Omura, Y. Takahashi and M. Yodogawa. 1988. The Development of Die Cast Metal Matrix Composites for Tribological Applications.
Conley, James Gerard, J. A. Caputi, Yen-Cheng Chen and Morris E. Fine. 1986. Interface Adsorption and Ostwald Ripening. Scripta Metallurgica. 20(5): 743-744.
Working Papers
Conley, James Gerard and D. Jain. 2013. They Call it 'The Shark Fin Curve'.
Conley, James Gerard and D. Jain. 2013. Pharmaceutical Marketing Opportunities at the Nexus of Pricing Regulation and Innovation Policy.
Conley, James Gerard, Holger Ernst and Nils Omland. 2013. How to Create Commercial Value from Patents: The Role of Patent Management.
Conley, James Gerard, P. Bican and Holger Ernst. 2013. Articulating the Value of Intellectual Property.
Krasnikov, Alexander, James Gerard Conley and P. Bican. 2012. Trademarks as Indicators of Marketing Innovation.
Book Chapters
Conley, James Gerard and Robert C. Wolcott. 2007. "Scaling from Prototype to Production: A Managed Process." In Proceedings of NSF/US Depart. of Educ. Workshop Novermber 3-4, 2003, Washington DC (scale-up: multidisciplinary perspectives), DRDC at the University of Chicago.
Conley, James Gerard and Robert C. Wolcott. 2006. "Scaling from Prototype to Production: A Managed Process for Commercial Offerings." In Scale-up in Education: Ideas in Principle, edited by Barbara Schneider and Sarah-Kathryn McDonald, vol. 1, 103-122. Lanham, MD: Rowman & Littlefield.
Conley, James Gerard. 2000. "An Airframe Design Perspective on Casting Process Simulation." In Proceedings of the Ninth International Engineering Foundation Conference on the Modeling of Casting, Welding and Solidification Processes, edited by P. Sahm, Lars Peter Hansen, Conley, Aachen: TMS Publications.
Conley, James Gerard and Julie Huang. 1998. "Benchmarking Experiments for Permanent Mold Aluminum Alloy A356 Castings." In Modeling of Casting, Welding, and Solidification Processes, edited by B.G. Thomas and C. Beckermann, vol. 8, TMS Publications.
Conley, James Gerard, H.S. Cheng and P.C. Hsing. 1998. "Experimental Analysis of the Long Term Wear Results in a Four Stroke, Single Cylinder, Spark Ignition Engine." In New Developments in Engine Design, Aspiration and Lubrication, vol. 2, ASME-ICE Division.
Callau, Paul, James Gerard Conley and Julie Huang. 1998. "A Study of Neural Networks for Porosity Prediction in Aluminum Alloy A356 Castings." In Modeling of Casting, Welding, and Solidification Processes, edited by B.G. Thomas and C. Beckermann, vol. 8, TMS Publications.
Conley, James Gerard and Julie Huang. 1998. "Modeling of Microporosity Evolution During Solidification Processes." In Modeling of Casting, Welding, and Solidification Processes, edited by B.G. Thomas and C. Beckermann, vol. 8, TMS Publications.
Conley, James Gerard. 1996. "The Optimization of a 26.2 cc, OHV, $-cycle Engine Aspiration System to Achieve 1999 CARB Emissions Standards." In Design, Modeling and Emissions Control for Small Two and Four Stroke Engines, SAE Monograph.
Conley, James Gerard, T. Miyoshi, H. Omura, Y. Takahashi and M. Yodogawa. 1988. "Dispersion of NiAl Intermetallic Compound and Si3N4 in Die Castings for Increased Wear Resistance." In Dispersion Strengthened Aluminum Alloys, edited by Y.W. Kim and W. Griffith, Warrendale, PA: AIME.
Conley, James Gerard, S. Kami, H. Komoto, N. Nishi and Y. Takahashi. 1988. "The Mechanical Properties of Al-Ni-Mg and Al-Mn-Mg Die Casting Alloys." In Dispersion Strengthened Aluminum Alloys, edited by Y.W. Kim and W. Griffith, Warrendale, PA: AIME.
Conley, James Gerard, P. Kelsey and D.V. Miley. 1984. "Investigations of the Properties of Iron Enriched Basalt." In Advances in Ceramics, edited by G.G. Wicks and W.A. Ross, vol. 8, Columbus, OH: American Ceramic Society.
Other
Conley, James Gerard. "Shape of Things to Come." Wall Street Journal, May.
Conley, James Gerard. "Ryobi Outdoor Products: Kellogg Teaching Case." September.
Conley, James Gerard. "Trade Dress: Creating Competitive Advantage on the Internet." Kellogg Teaching Case, March.
Books
Wang, W, James Gerard Conley and H.W. Stoll. 2010. Rapid Tooling Guidelines for Sand Casting. SpringerLink Publications, 1st.
Conley, James Gerard and Peter R. Sahm. 2000. Modeling of Casting, Welding and Advanced Solidification Processes. TMS Publications.
Cases
Conley, James Gerard, Feng Qu, Geoff Nudd and Cooper Marcus. 2006. ttools (A): The Value of a Patent to the Entrepreneur. Case 5-306-509(A) (KEL279).
Conley, James Gerard, Feng Qu, Geoff Nudd and Cooper Marcus. 2006. ttools (B): The Value of a Patent to the Entrepreneur. Case 5-306-509(B) (KEL280).
Conley, James Gerard, Susan Deutsch, James Fields and Richard Wong. 2006. 3M ESPE AG. Case 5-406-753 (KEL288).
Conley, James Gerard and David Orozco. 2006. Innovation and Invention: A Patent Landscape. Case 7-406-750 (KEL104).
Conley, James GerardRobert C. Wolcott and Eric Wong. 2006. AstraZeneca, Prilosec, and Nexium: Marketing Challenges in the Launch of a Second-Generation Drug. Case 5-404-775 (KEL336).
Conley, James GerardRobert C. Wolcott and Eric Wong. 2006. AstraZeneca, Prilosec, and Nexium: Strategic Challenges in the Launch of a Second-Generation Drug. Case 5-404-752 (KEL334).
Conley, James GerardRobert C. Wolcott and Eric Wong. 2006. AstraZeneca, Prilosec, and Nexium: Case Supplement. Case 5-404-753 (KEL335).
Conley, James Gerard. 2006. Creative and the Zen Patent, A and B..
Conley, James Gerard and David Orozco. 2005. Intellectual Property: The Ground Rules. Case 7-305-501 (KEL140).
Patents
Conley, James Gerard and Jerome H. Lemelson. 1997. "Synthetic Diamond Layers Having Wear Resistant Coatings Formed In Situ and Methods of Applying Such Coatings." United States Patent 5786038, filed 3/31/1997, and issued 3/31/1997.
Conley, James Gerard and Jerome H. Lemelson. 1995. "Method of Applying a Wear Resistanet Diamond Coating to a Substrate." United States Patent 5616372, filed 6/7/1995, and issued 6/7/1995.
Lemelson, Jerome H. and James Gerard Conley. 1995. "Method of Depositing Synthetic Diamond Coatings with Intermediate Bonding Layers." United States Patent 5688557, filed 6/7/1995, and issued 6/7/1995.
Scarry, Joseph T., James Gerard Conley. 2001. "System and Method for Ameliorating Subcontracting Risk." United States Patent Document Number 20020087380, filed 10/12/2001, and published 10/12/2001.
Lemelson, Jerome H. and James Gerard Conley. 1997. "Synthetic Diamond Coatings with Intermediate Bonding Layers and Methods of Applying Such Coatings." United States Patent 6165616, filed 5/16/1997, and issued 5/16/1997.
Lemelson, Jerome H. and James Gerard Conley. 1995. "Synthetic Diamond Overlays for Gas Turbine Engine Parts Having Thermal Barrier Coatings." United States Patent 5714202, filed 6/7/1995, and issued 6/7/1995.
Lemelson, Jerome H. and James Gerard Conley. 1997. "Synthetic Diamond Coatings with Intermediate Amorphous Metal Bonding Layers and Methods of Applying Such Coatings." United States Patent 6083570, filed 4/16/1997, and issued 4/16/1997.

 
Print Teaching
Teaching Interests
Intellectual capital, technology and e-commerce, innovation, new product development, product design
Full-Time / Part-Time MBA
Intellectual Property for Entrepreneurs (KIEI-935-B)

Formerly ENTR-935-B

This course addresses what entrepreneurs need to know to secure and leverage the intangible, knowledge based assets of their business. The course begins with a survey of various intellectual property forms for inventions, original expressions, source identifiers/brands and confidential information etc. and how they can be used to build a unique selling proposition. We explore the cost effective paths to registering these intangibles as patents, copyrights, trade marks, or securing same as trade secrets. Methods for leveraging IP ownership to realize investment and or exit from the business are reviewed. Case studies explore entrepreneurship challenges in the electronics accessories, sound engineering, and consumer durable contexts

Intellectual Capital Management (MGMT-441-0)

This course counts toward the following majors: Entrepreneurship & Innovation, Health Enterprise Management, International Business (affiliate) , MMM/MEM design track, Managerial Economics, Social Enterprise, Technology Industry Management and Biotechnology.

This course covers the broad agenda of using intellectual capital for competitive advantage. With globalization, intangible assets such as human capital, intellectual property, brands and relationships have become the dominant proportion of a firm's market capitalization. Yet most firms do a poor job of managing this intellectual capital strategically. This course adopts a "lifecycle" approach to the management of an intellectual asset, covering the creation of the intellectual asset, the codification of the asset in the form of intellectual property (IP), the valuation of intellectual assets, the protection of intellectual assets and leveraging of intellectual assets into future markets for growth. Case studies examine related management challenges in entertainment, finance, pharmaceuticals, health care, consumer electronics, agribusiness, biotechnology, consulting, venture capital, telecommunications, software and other contexts. Additionally, the social implications of intellectual property policy are discussed.

Launching New Products and Services (MKTG-465-0)

This course counts toward the following majors: Entrepreneurship & Innovation, Marketing, Marketing Management

Innovating new products and services (and new product and service features) is among the most complex challenges faced by managers. How can one generate potentially breakthrough new product and service concepts? Given an infinite world of possibilities, how does one decide which products and feature concepts to pursue? How does one get customer feedback for products and features that do not yet exist? What marketing strategy & tactics should one employ to convince customers to purchase products they might not yet know they want? How does one reconcile the introduction of new products with an existing product portfolio? The goal of this course is to introduce students to marketing principles and concepts that they can use to tackle these questions and to develop their own approach to innovating new products and services.

Executive MBA
Intellectual Capital Management (MGMTX-441-0)
This course covers the specific agenda of using intellectual capital and or properties for building and sustaining competitive advantage. Intellectual assets like know-how, inventions, patents, explicit content, brands, trademarks (forms of intellectual property), contractual agreements etc. are often the largest proportion of a firm’s total wealth. And yet, most firms do a poor job of managing intellectual assets strategically. In this course, we adopt a “lifecycle” approach to the management of an intellectual asset. Methods and frameworks developed in lecture are exercised in case studies from multiple industries including food & agriculture (Monsanto), dental products (ESPE), pharmaceuticals (AZ), entertainment (Disney), and consumer electronics (Apple). Both mature markets and entrepreneurship contexts are reviewed. (formerly TECHX-441-0).