A partnership approach to successful, cost-effective technology transfer
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The U.S. government, which funds virtually all types of basic research and development, can maximize its investment and best support technology transfer by focusing on R&D at its “budding” stage, and by involving large corporations, small businesses, and researchers in formal three-way partnerships to refine promising technologies and find suitable markets for them. This approach has the added benefit of requiring no additional, special funding for technology transfer. I propose a three-way technology transfer approach based on these concepts: the creation of a three-way partnership among researchers (the innovators), small business (the product/market developers), and industry (the end users of technology), with close liaison from day one for each project, and government serving as the facilitator; the selection of projects that will produce research and development results convertible to prototypes for testing in the end user’s environment; and the selection of projects that complement each other for building a critical mass of technology transfer from the bottom up. This type of approach utilizes the best attributes of each member of the technology partnership; focuses technology transfer efforts at the level of basic technology, where there is maximum flexibility and opportunity; and utilizes existing program funding to accomplish technology transfer objectives.
KeywordsTechnology Transfer Small Business Basic Technology Program Funding Special Funding
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