Technology transfer is a formalized mechanism through
which universities speed the delivery of public benefits
by enabling companies to utilize research discoveries
in their product and technology development programs.
- Technology transfer is a two-way flow of benefits
between universities and businesses. This practice
began long before today's "New Economy."
Since the early 1800s, companies have started up and
depended upon university expertise. As early as 1943,
the University of California initiated a patent policy
to enable technology transfer activities.
- Companies invest in university research for a variety
of reasons: to access expertise of faculty; to identify
new recruits for their R&D departments; and to
leverage their limited R&D budgets and intellectual
- The research university is often the only institution
that advances important fundamental research that
lays the foundation on which future economic opportunities
- Technology transfer enables research advances to
be transformed into products, technologies, services
and other benefits the public can use. Technologies
are often "transferred" for commercial purposes
through the licensing of UC-owned intellectual property
by private companies. These licenses are standard
practice at universities throughout the country.
- Companies that license university inventions usually
undertake substantial subsequent R&D efforts in
order to bring new products, technology and services
to the market.
- Small businesses (under 500 employees) account for
roughly 60% of technology licensing agreements made
by universities, federal laboratories, and non-profit
research labs, according to the Association of University
Technology Managers 1999 licensing survey.
- Technology transfer helps maintain the country's
competitive edge in the quick-changing, global economy
and generates new jobs - an estimated 270,000 jobs
in FY 1998-99.
- The commercialization of academic research resulted
in more than $40 billion in academic activity in 1999,
according to the Association of University Technology
Managers licensing survey. UC earned $80.9 million
from commercialized inventions in FY 1999.
Technology Transfer at the Governor Gray Davis
Institutes for Science and Innovation
A priority for the institutes is to foster new cutting-edge
research and education programs. Equally important is
the rapid delivery of research advances to the private
sector for the development of new technologies and products
that benefit the public. Technology transfer procedures
provide the essential conduit for making the benefits
of research at the institutes available to the public through the marketplace.
For more information: UC
Office of Technology Transfer