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First-of-its-kind accelerator for supporting innovative quantum startups.

Duality is the first program in the nation that is exclusively dedicated to accelerating new startup companies focused on quantum science and technology. It is led by the University of Chicago's Polsky Center for Entrepreneurship and Innovation and the Chicago Quantum Exchange, along with founding partners the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign, Argonne National Laboratory, and P33.

The 12-month accelerator program is based in Chicago, and offers innovative quantum startups a comprehensive set of resources including:

  • Entrepreneurial training
  • World-class business expertise and mentorship
  • Technical expertise and the opportunity to access state-of-the-art facilities*
  • Industry exposure
  • $50,000 (USD) in unrestricted funding

* The opportunity to access state-of-the-art facilities is subject to approval by the relevant facility, and compliance with its policies and procedures.


The name Duality refers to a core principle of quantum mechanics, in which a single entity may act as both a particle and a wave. It reflects the inability of classical physics to fully describe the nature of our world at the atomic scale. In quantum physics, wave-particle duality is a concept that holds entities such as light and electrons to act as both a particle and a wave, resulting in paradoxical phenomena ranging from quantum tunneling to entanglement and teleportation that will drive technological advances of the future. Similarly, this combination of two dual perspectives – quantum science and business – is provided by our founding partners.

Chicago Booth classroom

World-Class Business and Entrepreneurship Training

During the first three months of the program, Duality startups will undergo formal instruction and entrepreneurial training taught by the University of Chicago Booth School of Business and Polsky Center staff, including:

  • Intellectual Property, Exclusivity and the Value of Innovation

  • Corporate Partnership Strategies

  • Preparing Your SBIR/STTR Application

  • Introduction to Venture Capital and Term Sheet Negotiation

  • Building a Diverse and Inclusive Company

  • And more...

Polsky Quantum Event with Industry Experts

Industry Engagement

Duality startups will participate in an in-depth industry feedback session, called Corporate Collision. This two-day, invite-only showcase gives startups the opportunity to engage in 1:1 conversations with corporate partners. Startups learn about marketplace needs and challenges and then translate this feedback into business development opportunities that can be solved with quantum technologies.

Startups will continue to engage with industry throughout the program as they continue their technology and business plan development efforts. They will also have access and opportunities to engage in discussions with technical experts from partner institutions during this time.

Contact Us:

Questions? Email Anna Wislocki and she will be happy to answer any questions you may have about Duality.

Polsky Logo Chicago Quantum Exchange Logo UChicago Logo Illinios Unversity Logo Argonne Logo P33 Chicago Logo