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20 Feb

Who should pay for knowledge exchange?

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Economic theories of the market and public goods in the evaluation and method for HEIF. We evaluated our funding for knowledge exchange (KE) through the Higher Education Innovation Fund (HEIF) in 2015 based on two studies. PACEC consultants and Tomas Coates-Ulrichsen of Cambridge University adopted qualitative and quantitative approaches respectively, to give a rounded view of the achievements of the funding. Both studies commented on the strengths and weaknesses of using KE income as a measure of the impact of our funding, and also as a metric to allocate funds. Both studies came to the pragmatic conclusion that income was the best approach we have to date to measuring value, and that it was not obviously distorting as an allocation metric. Views on...
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13 Feb

Understanding why some patents get licensed…while others do not

licensing
Technology licensing is an activity where the owner of a patent (the licensor) allows another party (the licensee) the rights to use, adapt and commercialize that patent in exchange for compensation. It is undoubtedly a growing and increasingly important innovation activity with reports that annual global revenues for technology licensing exceed $200 billion (Alvarex and López, 2015). Despite this considerable market for patented technologies, many patents remain unlicensed. It is believed that the overall market for patents could be 70% larger, as many licensors wish to license their technologies but are unable to secure a buyer (licensee) (Gambardella, Giuri and Luzzi, 2007). Understanding why some patents get licensed while others do not is the focus of a new study that myself and...
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6 Feb

5 Tactics to Improve Your Technology Scouting

scouting
Identifying cutting-edge technology is simply the first step of technology scouting. The key to effective tech scouting is to capture the right opportunity at the right time. We assembled a list of five tactics to help you streamline your process. 1. Discover the Unknown While an abundance of new start-ups and patents has made scouting more worthwhile than ever, information gathering is becoming more difficult. The AUTM survey released earlier this year revealed an 11.3% increase over the record number of patents issued set in 2013 and a 12% increase in startups launched [1]. Given this growth, technology scouting has become a key strategy for companies to remain competitive and augment their R&D processes. While there is no lack of ideas, the...
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30 Jan

5 Tips For Finding the Right Industry Partner

industry partner
We know you don’t need convincing about the benefits of industry collaboration, so it’s less a question of if, and rather more about how to find the right partner and negotiate a good deal. In terms of teeing things up and starting the dialogue, here are five important things to do that can help you get there more efficiently: Map Your Gaps For a partnership between and early-stage technology company and an industry partner to really pay off, it needs to work for both sides. With financial investors, the goal is fairly straight forward: they put x money in and seek x in return via trade, sale, or IPO. But prospective industry partners, it is a strategic interest; with the goal of...
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23 Jan

Some observations of a peripatetic tech transfer agent

travel agent
Coming through Border Control, as I did recently when I moved from Australia to start work at Cambridge Enterprise, usually means having to explain tech transfer. ‘Technology Transfer Associate?’ the border agent will typically ask, scanning my landing card. ‘What do you actually do?’ and ‘Does such a job actually exist?’ It sure does. And the more I travel, the more diversity I see in the ways technology and knowledge are transferred. This diversity, I believe, reflects the social and business environment in which Technology Transfer Offices (TTOs) all over the world operate. University TTOs almost always have a mission to contribute positively to society and the economy, through the dissemination of knowledge via the most appropriate means—often commercialisation. This could lead...
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16 Jan

The importance of a good pitch: a key skill for those seeking investment

seeking investment
At the Cambridge Postdoc Enterprise Competition grand finale on 27 October the quality of the finalists’ pitches was vital to their chances of success. While this was a competition, the skills are the same whether you are pitching to a panel of judges or to potential investors. As part of the mentoring the finalists received they were advised by Adelina Chalmers, a guru in presentation and pitching. She supplied the low-down on what investors want to see in a pitch and how to speak their language. While there are many ways to structure and deliver a pitch, Chalmers’s approach is a simple one: Ask yourself what you want and what your potential investors want, then make sure you answer both of...
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21 Dec

Technology Transfer Officer- A science PhD’s career option beyond the research bench

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Have you ever wondered if you (or your research team) ever invent something that has direct translational value what steps will be necessary to actually bring it out in the market? As you can guess it is a long and complex process and some of the crucial parts of this process will be applying for patent(s), dealing with intellectual property law and licensing of the technology for commercialization. This is where a technology transfer officer gets involved. It is one of those rare opportunities which is right there in your university, and can give you an exposure to the world outside academic research without even leaving your university. The purpose of a university’s Office of Technology Transfer is to manage intellectual...
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5 Dec

The MAGIC for Successful Technology Transfer

The-MAGIC-for-Successful-Technology-Transfer
In a perfect world of licensing, TTOs may dream of a discovery licensed to a medical company, which continues developing it until it has established proof-of-concept in humans.Then a larger firm with the capability to conduct late-stage clinical trials comes in and carries the molecule to the market launch. It is an ideal scenerio that rarely plays out in real life. Instead, the path to the market is rough & laden with inefficiencies from funding to licencing agreements. The bad is that almost every early stage technology at the universities has to deal with these troubles all the time....
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