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Academia and Industry: Introduction to Tech Transfer and Collaborations

This workshop is designed for people responsible for setting up collaborations between academia and industry, wishing to expand their skills and deepen their knowledge of the intricacies of research and development collaborations between academia and industry.

Learning Objectives

  • A broad overview of the fields covered by Knowledge Transfer Officers and offices;
  • Cover the basic output of a KTO / TTO;
  • Gain insights into patenting and patent evaluation, and the licensing process;
  • Develop the rudimentary tools for dealing with inventions, inventors, licensees, founders and potential cooperation partners;
  • Increase knowledge on setting up a spin-off company, including the broad financing possibilities;
  • Handling communication between academia and industry within collaborations
  • Managing expectations

Course Topics

Please refer to the programme tab below

  • Programme
  • Speakers


  • Wed 02 February 2022

    • 09:00 - 09:30    Course introduction

      Getting to know your trainer and your fellow colleagues as well as course overview.

    • 09:30 - 11:30    Finding and evaluating technology opportunities and exploitation strategies

      Very few of the disclosures we receive are likely to form the basis of a good patent – fewer still (maybe 1 in 10) have any commercial potential. Moreover, we simply do not have the time to simultaneously manage too many projects. How then should we: scout, screen, evaluate, and rank the disclosures and opportunities we receive? What exploitation scenario and strategy are most suitable? How should we reject the ones that we decide not to pursue?

    • 10:30 - 10:45    Break

    • 10:45 - 11:45    Introduction to licensing

      This session offers a general introduction to the what, why and how of licensing and addresses some of the common matters you need to take into consideration when negotiating a licensing deal.

    • 11:45 - 12:45    Patenting : what you should know

      An introduction to the what and when of patenting academic findings and the key decision points along the way.

    • 12:45 - 13:45    Lunch

    • 13:45 - 14:45    Introduction to academic spin-offs

      This session will provide a basic overview of the different steps needed to create an academic spin-out covering topics such as: bringing the right team together, valuing the technology, and writing a business plan.
      Jeff Skinner

    • 14:45 - 15:45    Technology transfer through research collaborations

      More than 95% of the knowledge transfer from academia to industry takes place in your day-to-day research collaborations. In this exercise, learn more about the expectations of industry and academia when setting up a research collaboration and about the

    • 15:45 - 16:00    Break

    • 16:00 - 17:00    Sales tactics

      We like to believe that conversations with potential partners build their own momentum and that - if all goes well – they will eventually agree to a deal of some kind. Well, maybe, but the sales professionals have a myriad of tactics to ensure they’re talking to the right people, inject a sense of urgency and scope (and price) the project early, thereby weeding out ‘tyre-kickers’ early.
      Jeff Skinner

  • Thu 03 February 2022

    • 09:00 - 09:45    Getting started – Introduction to different types of agreements

      A presentation on the different forms of collaboration and cooperation that we have with industry, and the various forms of agreement that we use to define the relationship, including Material Transfer Agreements, Consultancy Agreements and Research Collaboration Agreements. This session will guide you through selecting the right form of agreement to align expectations and avoiding conflict.

    • 09:45 - 10:45    Deriving fair value from foreground IP

      Finding the right IP structure is only half the battle. We are still left with the issue of valuing the IP; when we have little knowledge of the IP’s true value. What should we do? Should we take the academics’ opinion, consult with the Technology Transfer Office or trust the company? Or should we insist on a ‘wait and see’ strategy in which the discussion is deferred until we know what has been ‘invented’, and its commercial value. How can we avoid meaningless ‘agree to agree’ clauses in which one or other party is left exposed? What tools can we use, and which structure do we choose for the payments?

    • 10:45 - 11:00    Break

    • 11:00 - 12:00    IP clauses: the different possibilities

      We will introduce the different parameters’ of IP clauses

      Differentiating ‘background’ from ‘foreground’ and the imperative of maintaining academic freedom to research and collaborate. Once we have determined how to manage the IP rights and the solutions that best match any given scenario, we face the challenge of drafting clauses that are clear, unambiguous, and workable for a long-term relationship. Group work will be used here to share experiences, stimulate discussion and wording. The end point will be an understanding of IP clauses we can use and the confidence to negotiate them.

    • 12:00 - 12:45    Managing the IP when projects overlap

      Most researchers are involved in multiple collaborations; both simultaneously and sequentially. So are businesses. Part of our role is to ensure that there are no conflicts and to ensure that academic freedom (to work with others) is preserved.

      In this session, we will look at two real-life cases to explore which problems can occur when we try to manage the many different sources of funding and contractual obligations that bind researchers.

    • 12:45 - 13:45    Lunch

    • 13:45 - 14:45    Keeping track of IP - open innovation

      What happens once the collaboration agreement has been signed? Is it filed never to be seen again or is it monitored and controlled? Who is responsible for tracking the contract obligation? How do we manage the obligation to grant access rights in EU projects and how do we follow up on the options we have granted in the contracts?

    • 14:45 - 15:00    Break

    • 15:00 - 16:00    When things go wrong

      Sometimes the collaboration will not have a happy ending. It can be a violation of the contract terms, or a different interpretation of the wording. Whatever the problem is, it will almost certainly create unpleasant conversations and shall require difficult negotiations to reach an agreement on how to resolve the problem. In the session, you will be presented with several real-life scenarios and given a role to play in trying to solve them.


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