The Evaluation Process of Research Commercialization Proposals and its Links to University Technology Transfer (TT) Strategy: A Case Study
Open innovation and continuously evolving collaborative schemes of key actors along the innovation chain increase the complexity of technology transfer. University TTOs need to adapt to new challenges and therefore move from their traditional role of facilitating patenting and licensing activities to one of active engagement and deep involvement in supporting the different stages of research commercialization. Building successful TTO business models requires aligning the TTO service offerings with the characteristics of research produced in the parent institution and to the various forms of assistance needed by academic staff to commercially exploit their research results.
This work presents a method to assess and support commercialization proposals by university researchers. Although the intention is to choose projects with the highest exploitation potential, the objective is not to just have the top projects of an innovation contest, but rather select projects together with the support services and corresponding resources needed to enable them to reach their commercialization objectives. Moreover, it is shown that when available TTO resources are not enough to handle all projects with merit, a more formal approach can be adopted, involving the solution of a decision problem that may also serve as a planning tool for future TTO staffing.
Applied in an academic environment with limited technology transfer experience, the proposed assessment framework is used to develop a longer-term TTO strategy.
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