Involve Inventors Throughout The IP Commercialization Process: The Benefits Can Be Substantial And The Risks Can Be Managed

Michael A. Cohen

At many universities, intellectual property (IP) managers aren’t encouraged to work closely with university inventors throughout the IP commercialization process—from developing strategies to executing agreements. Some universities even discourage this type of comprehensive collaboration for fear of fomenting conflicts of interest, or because they think that the opinions of scientists shouldn’t bias the judgment of business people. However, working closely with inventors during the entire IP commercialization process can have many benefits such as (a) establishing optimized licensing plans, (b) maximizing the potential of corporate sponsored research, (c) educating the campus community about IP, and (d) cultivating inventors to be satisfied if not delighted with their IP licensing office.


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