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The University of Kansas Medical Center: Director of Licensing


Job Description Summary:

Supporting all of KU including the KU Medical Center in Kansas City, the KU Center for Technology Commercialization (KUCTC) manages discoveries and innovations made from KU research so that they may have greater impact, benefit the public, and promote economic development. Through licensing discoveries, promoting entrepreneurship, and stimulating innovation KUCTC helps create a better future. Reporting to the Executive Director of KUCTC, the Director of Licensing is a senior member of KUCTC, leading its licensing functions. The Director and their team are focused on core technology transfer functions including the sourcing, reviewing, protecting, managing and licensing of KU innovations as well as other tasks relating to commercialization efforts.

This position is located on both the Kansas City, KS and Lawrence, KS campuses.

Job Description:

Required Qualifications

Education: Master’s degree in life sciences, physical science, engineering or related field or bachelor’s degree in business, life sciences or related field and two plus years’ working in a university technology transfer environment.

Work Experience:

  • 7-10 years of academic technology transfer, business development, commercialization experience
  • Experience managing others and developing talent.
  • Experience working with intellectual property law, contract law, innovation, relevant technical fields, negotiations, and business principles and practices of the higher education research enterprise and academic technology transfer.
  • Experience working in an environment requiring comprehensive working knowledge of principles and federal regulations governing research administration in the conduct of academic research, grants and contracts.

Preferred Qualifications

Education: Doctoral degree with a PhD highly preferred or a law degree with experience in patent law.

Work Experience:

  • Experience in market research, business development, and licensing
  • Experience working in or with startup companies a plus


  • Strong leadership and sound decision-making skills.
  • Must be comfortable as a visible leader on campus promoting technology transfer and representing KU within the local innovation ecosystem.
  • Strong organizational skills.
  • Excellent communication skills.

Job Duties Outlined

Innovation Management:

  • Builds and manages a team of licensing professionals responsible for KUCTC’s efforts to source, evaluate and license KU innovations.
  • Establish and maintains relationships with researchers, educates KU faculty about intellectual property and technology transfer.
  • Develops and implements strategies to identify inventions arising from KU research.
  • Develops licensing-related objectives and associated metrics; provide regular reporting on progress to leadership.
  • Oversees KUCTC’s process of evaluating and managing KU innovations.
  • Manages a portfolio of IP assets and corresponding relationships with researchers and licensee

Business Development:

  • Coordinates with KUCTC marketing staff on marketing strategies for unlicensed KU innovations.
  • Laisses with other KU innovations programs, fosters research collaborations, and assists with securing additional resources for translation and development.
  • Represent KU at local, regional, and national partnering and business development events

License Technologies to Startups and Existing Companies:

  • Develops tools and strategies to facilitate licensing of KU innovations.
  • Negotiates complex licenses and other contracts with existing companies, startups, and other partners.
  • Assists licensing staff with license and contract negotiations.

Operations & Compliance:

  • Data entry and use of technology transfer data management system.
  • Coordinate with KUCTC operations staff with regards to federal, financial, and post-license compliance. 


  • Manage the licensing team includes recruiting, training, and coaching to meet the department’s goals; responding to issues, building an effect team, performing position review and annual evaluations.
  • Advises and supports licensing staff.
  • Provides support to KU sponsored research staff regarding industry and non-profit contracts
  • Represents KUCTC in seminars and other educational events at KU
  • Collaborates with college and departments to support a culture of innovation across KU’s campuses
  • Participates in professional development and training opportunities.
  • Other duties as assigned.

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