Technology Transfer and Sponsored Research
Most inventions are the result of sponsored research activities. Government grants and contracts contain a standard intellectual property clause that enables the University to “elect” rights to inventions that may result from the research. In contrast, research agreements with industry or nonprofit sponsors do not contain this standard clause. Instead, each party’s rights to any new inventions resulting from the research must be agreed to for each award. There were over 3,800 such awards in FY97 and hundreds of them involved complex negotiations related to the intellectual property clause.
In general, industry sponsors have a primary interest in obtaining rights to any technologies resulting from the research they sponsor. Because it is often difficult to balance industry interests with those of the University, contract and grant officers must often negotiate complex intellectual property provisions. These negotiations have become increasingly important to the technology transfer program as the amount of industry-sponsored research has grown (Exhibit 9) and the nature of research collaborations and consortia with industry has become more complex. OTT and the campus offices are often called upon to assist in these sponsored research negotiations.
In addition, licensing professionals are becoming increasingly involved in the negotiation of arrangements whereby agreements for research funding are related to license agreements for existing technologies. In FY97, over $9.0 million of industry support for sponsored research was committed to the University in conjunction with the execution of license and option agreements.
*FY97 UC direct cost expenditures of industry dollars. Figure does not include industry funding of indirect costs.
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