WHY IS PATENT PROTECTION SO IMPORTANT?
Without patent protection, anyone is free to copy an invention. For certain types of inventions and discoveries, patent protection is necessary to justify the investment required to develop them into products for public use.
AM I OBLIGATED TO SUBMIT A DISCLOSURE TO THE POLSKY CENTER?
Yes. If researchers, staff, or students come up with an invention in the course of their work at the University, and/or with the substantial aid of its facilities and/or funds administered by it, they are obligated to disclose the invention to the University. This obligation serves the University’s mission of bringing the benefits of its research to the public, as commercial channels may be the most efficient dissemination mechanism for certain types of technologies. Federal grants typically require that inventions made using federal funds be disclosed to the University and reported to the government. Other research sponsors typically impose similar conditions.
WHAT IF I JUST WANT TO PUBLISH MY DISCOVERY, OR DISTRIBUTE MY SOFTWARE USING AN OPEN SOURCE LICENSE?
Although there is an obligation to disclose inventions to the Polsky Center, publishing scholarly articles is the best way to disseminate the majority of the work done at the University. We help investigators with projects that may benefit from a commercial partner. In some cases, obtaining intellectual property protection is necessary to incentivize a partner to commercially develop the technology. We also advise on the various types of Open Source licenses.
WHY DOES THE UNIVERSITY FILE PATENTS?
Patents are a tool to attract outside investment to move a technology from the lab to the commercial world
Research sponsors want the research they fund to have impact
// POTENTIAL FINANCIAL RETURN
To individual researchers and to the University