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The “Need to Knowledge” Stage Gate Model for Objective Assessment and Efficient Advancement of University Innovations

Format: On-Demand Video, DVD, or PDF Transcript
Originally presented: January 12, 2017

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After a faculty or student inventor hands over their “baby” to the TTO, there are many factors that can affect commercial viability – but often these innovations either move forward or die on the vine without getting a systematic vetting that helps the most promising technologies move forward and prevents precious budget dollars from being expended on losing propositions. At the same time, faculty are too often left out of this vetting in two critical ways – they don’t get information up front on how they can guide their innovations with commercialization criteria in mind, and they don’t get feedback from tech assessments that could be valuable in furthering the technology’s commercial usefulness and marketability.

Is the technology patentable? Is it marketable? Is it licensable or suitable for a spin-out company? Is it in a highly competitive market, and if so what are its unique advantages?  These are questions that innovators should be aware of and working hand-in-hand with the TTO on answering. Not only does such interaction improve faculty relationships, it ultimately improves the innovations themselves and the TTO’s market knowledge so their decisions are better informed — and then better communicated back to faculty.

The bottom line result is an objective and thorough analysis at every stage of a technology’s development. This allows limited resources to be focused properly on winning technologies, while avoiding expense for innovations that don’t have a clear path to the marketplace.

If this all sounds theoretical to you, it’s not. This describes very briefly what the “Need to Knowledge” (NtK) Stage Gate Model is all about, and we invited one of the foremost experts on NtK to share his expertise with you in this thought-provoking and detailed webinar: 

The “Need to Knowledge” Stage Gate Model for Objective Assessment and Efficient Advancement of University Innovations

NtK identifies unmet needs that lead to a technology’s stepwise progression in research discovery, prototype development, and product innovation. Encompassing all activities from inception through post-launch evaluation, the model paints a complete picture of the research, development, and production processes. It also offers step-by-step decision points and guidance regarding what actions should be considered throughout the life cycle of a project.

Please join Joseph Lane, MBPA, from the University at Buffalo, who will walk you through this proven model and give you actionable takeaways so you can put it into practice to help advance your most promising innovations while objectively allocating your limited resources.

Here’s a quick review of the agenda:

  • Gain a deep understanding of Need to Knowledge be reviewing:
    • How and why was the model created
    • Essential principles of Need to Knowledge
    • What makes up each stage gate
  • Addressing the three phases of commercialization: Discovery, Invention, Innovation
    • Who the main players should be for each phase and stage gate
    • Tips for educating innovators on the process
    • How the model works to tailor implementation plans for technology
  • Benefits to stakeholders
  • Examples of success stories
  • Advice on how to incorporate this model into your current disclosure triage procedures
  • Review of various Need to Knowledge models 

PLUS! Hear the recording of the original Q&A portion of the program.

Your faculty presenter:

Joseph P. LaneJoseph P. Lane, MBPA
Director, Center for Assistive Technology
University at Buffalo
The State University of New York

Joe explores the related processes of knowledge translation (KT), technology transfer (TT), and commercial transactions (CT) in the context of technology-based innovation. For the past 25 years he has led projects that applied supply push, demand pull and corporate collaboration strategies to broker the market launch of over fifty new commercial products. At the same time, he contributed to understanding the underlying mechanisms through many peer-reviewed publications and conference presentations. These published findings are integrated with the relevant global literature within the Need to Knowledge (NtK) Model, as an evidence-based and operational framework for linking the 3 methodologies of scientific research, engineering development and industrial production. His primary conclusion is that each methodology is purposely designed to generate a different state of knowledge: conceptual discovery, prototype invention, and commercial innovation, respectively. All of this work is grounded within a series of national centers, funded by the U.S. Department of Education and the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, conducted through an organized research unit, the Center for Assistive Technology within the School of Public Health & Health Professions, University at Buffalo, New York.

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