Yet it’s more than that. It’s our University’s obligation as a publicly funded institution.
The Bayh-Dole Act obligates us to “use the patent system to promote the utilization of inventions arising from federally supported research or development.”
The Oregon State University research enterprise takes this responsibility seriously. It is built into the mission of this land-, sea-, space-, sun grant institution. Our Office of Technology Transfer (OTT) is committed to facilitating OSU research “to impact the world.” In fact, this issue is becoming so important, we are in the midst of an expansion (and renaming) of OTT to incorporate greater capacity for new business development and industrial relations. Stay tuned for more on that subject soon.
Commercializing of OSU inventions. Taking our research results to the marketplace. Building ever-stronger partnerships with industry. Contributing to economic growth. All of these activities are part of our effort to benefit the local, regional, national, and world community.
Almost every grant proposal that OSU faculty submits these days includes a section about “outreach.” From the beginning of an idea, we are getting into the habit of thinking ahead to the so what? factor.
(At the same time, OSU does still value and support basic research, and high-risk explorations. We’ll discuss those in other posts.)
Also, Bayh-Dole will be considered for reauthorization in the next Congress. Your thoughts are important to me. I’ve been asked by our members of Congress to help stimulate discussion on these issues, so please feel free to give me your input.
[ed. note: If you want to do so via this blog, open a specific blog entry by clicking on its title (rather than staying the general “archives” page) and scroll down to the “reply” section.]
– Rick Spinrad, VP for Research