Robert Melancton Metcalfe (born April 7, 1946) is an engineer-entrepreneur from the United States who helped pioneer the Internet starting in 1970, co-invented Ethernet, co-founded 3Com and formulated Metcalfe's law. Starting in January 2011, he is Professor of Innovation and Entrepreneurship at The University of Texas at Austin. He is also the Murchison Fellow of Free Enterprise.
Robert Metcalfe was born in 1946 in Brooklyn, New York. His father was a gyroscope test technician, who specialized in gyroscopes. His mother was a homemaker but later became the secretary at Bay Shore High School. In 1964, Metcalfe graduated from Bay Shore High School to join the MIT Class of 1968. He finally graduated from MIT in 1969 with two S.B. degrees, one in electrical engineering and the other in industrial management from the MIT Sloan School of Management. He then went to Harvard for graduate school, earning his M.S. in applied mathematics in 1970 and his PhD in computer science (applied mathematics) in 1973.