This post was published on September 15, 2014.
We hear a lot about technology transfer these days, particularly with Prime Minister Modi’s recent visits to Japan, with whom India is negotiating collaboration opportunities in the area of infrastructure, defense and energy. Technology transfer refers to the transfer, assignment or licensing of various forms of Intellectual Property developed by one person, organization, university or even a country to another. The reason for transfer is to promote public good through the development of IP into useful and usable goods or services that in turn, promote economic growth.
Leading universities, primarily from industrialized countries, generate rich IP which then is disseminated to society through private partnerships. The United States, being the primary example of an economy investing significantly into university based research and development, provides incentives to the university and to inventor(s) to jointly benefit from the commercialization of such innovations. The US passed the Bayh Dole Act in 1980 to speed up the process of commercializing federally funded university research. The Act fostered greater collaboration between universities and the private sector, leading to significant industrial growth.