Tech Transfer Central
University-Industry Engagement Advisor
University-Industry Engagement Advisor

University-Industry Engagement Advisor, January 2019


University-Industry Engagement Advisor, January 2019The following is a list of the articles that appear in the January 2019 issue of University-Industry Engagement Advisor monthly newsletter. 

If you are a current subscriber click here to log in and access your issue as well as your bonus webinar collection, Best Practices in Forming and Managing Industry-University Partnerships.

University-Industry Engagement Advisor
Vol. 1, No. 1, January 2019

  • Universities key to successful pitch for Amazon HQ2. Few economic development efforts in recent years (if any) have captured as much national attention as the competition to win approval from Amazon for its HQ2 location. The successful efforts of Northern Virginia, one of 238 applicants, were led by the Virginia Economic Development Partnership (VEDP), and one might have assumed that, like its co-winner in New York, tax incentives were one of the keys to it success.
  • University-industry effort helps fill training gap among grad students. An extensive joint program between The Graduate School of NC State and several of its corporate partners is providing targeted programming for graduate students seeking a career in industry.
  • Don’t let details of visiting scientist agreements get lost in the shuffle. While leading an interactive discussion on visiting scientist agreements at the recent UIDP27 meeting in Chicago, Carolyn M. Brougham, JD, senior contracts officer in the Office for Sponsored Research at Northwestern University, noted that “the big question we dealt with is how the ‘sausage’ is made, and who quarterbacks for the university?”
  • UCF and its students thrive with aerospace industry partnerships. In real estate, they say the three most important factors are “location, location, location,” and that certainly can’t hurt a university interested in seeing as many of its graduates as possible hired by leading companies in desirable fields.
  • New web portal at U Saskatchewan offers one-stop-shop for industry. Few university outreach efforts warm the hearts of industry as much as the question, “How can we better serve you?”
  • Scotland weaves together ‘triple helix’ of partners to enhance life science ecosystem. A new “simple guide” to health sciences in Scotland was initiated by an organization representing different areas of the spectrum.

Posted January 14th, 2019

Industry-Sponsored Research Management, December 2018


Industry-Sponsored Research Management, December 2018The following is a list of the articles that appear in the December 2018 issue of Industry-Sponsored Research Management monthly newsletter. 

If you are a current subscriber click here to log in and access your issue as well as your bonus webinar collection, Best Practices in Forming and Managing Industry-University Partnerships.

If you would like a free sample issue, click here.

Industry-Sponsored Research Management
Vol. 2, No. 12, December 2018

  • Cornell creates new industry-friendly contract options to attract more partnerships. While an enthusiastic approach to forming partnerships with industry is a good start for a university seeking to expand in the area of corporate-sponsored research, the leaders of Cornell University’s efforts recognized that an “open for business” attitude was just that: a start.
  • Starbucks and ASU partner to offer free tuition to thousands. In what is definitely a unique approach to university-industry partnerships, Starbucks and Arizona State University have worked together since 2014 on the Starbucks College Achievement Plan (SCAP), a program designed to provide the opportunity for Starbucks’ partners (employees) to attend and graduate college that they otherwise likely would not have had.
  • UW restructures units, adds staff to strengthen outreach to industry. Has UW-Madison been faltering in its efforts to engender partnerships with industry? A recent article in the publication Isthmus posed the following question: “Why does the world-class research institution struggle to work with industry?”
  • Open new partnership opportunities by helping tech scouts see the bigger picture. Optimizing relationships with corporate technology scouts is not a one-size-fits-all proposition, but it can include both narrowing and expanding their focus, depending on their company’s needs and their awareness of the university’s capabilities.
  • New agreement enables CSL Behring to choose from 21 potential university partners. As a company involved in therapeutics, diagnostics, or medical devices, would you prefer to pursue collaborations one university at a time, or link up with a source that can offer you your pick of proposals from as many as 21 universities?
  • Researchers take road trip to get face time with potential industry partners. For universities in rural or off-the-beaten-path locations, getting face-to-face with potential industry research partners is no simple task. But Michigan Technological University (MTU), a 7,000-student school in Houghton, is getting some of that face time by sending its researchers on a road trip.
  • Cranfield’s research deal with Severn Trent recognized as ‘Top 100’ partnership. What lands an academic-industry partnership among the “Top 100” global corporate-academic partnerships, according to the Nature Index?

Posted December 12th, 2018

Industry-Sponsored Research Management, November 2018


Industry-Sponsored Research Management, November 2018The following is a list of the articles that appear in the November 2018 issue of Industry-Sponsored Research Management monthly newsletter. 

If you are a current subscriber click here to log in and access your issue as well as your bonus webinar collection, Best Practices in Forming and Managing Industry-University Partnerships.

If you would like a free sample issue, click here.

Industry-Sponsored Research Management
Vol. 2, No. 11, November 2018

  • Brown U develops new model for ‘scalable’ industry engagement. An industry-university relationship — like a human to human relationship — is ideally something that runs deep and lasts a long time. So, the best way to build a good industry-university relationship may be to model that relationship on human relationships. Start small, get to know each other, and then gradually scale-up to the ideal relationship. The Office of Industry Engagement & Commercial Venturing at Brown University is building a model for industry engagement using this scale-up concept.
  • BASF shares key elements of success in multi-institutional collaborations. BASF has a long history of collaborations with academia around the globe, but its research deals in the U.S. have been relatively far and few between despite a surfeit of leading chemistry research institutions. To address this gap, BASF executives with personal ties to Harvard professors started a dialogue that laid the foundation for the company’s multidisciplinary, strategic collaborations with American universities.
  • How to make the most of campus visits from corporate partners. At the recent UIDP 27 gathering in Chicago, Sacha Patera, PhD, senior managing director for corporation relationships at Dartmouth College, led a discussion about how to maximize the outcomes of in-person visits between university and corporate partners. Patera represented a group which will ultimately publish a guide on these best practices for UIDP, but as she and the other members of the group ISRM interviewed noted, their comments for this article are not an “official” stance, but rather their individual thoughts on how to optimize these visits, flavored of course with the feedback each of them have shared to date.
  • Humana, U Houston partner on new med school in bid to boost population health. It may not be all that unique for a medical school and a corporation to collaborate, but this one’s a little different; you see, this medical school has not even opened yet (the inaugural class will begin study in the fall of 2020).
  • With industry help, UConn creates state-of-the-art park for collaborative research. When universities and industry enter into research collaborations, the partnerships may typically involve a single researcher or research team, with the research taking place at the lab where the project got its beginnings. But the University of Connecticut is thinking much, much bigger than that.

Posted November 13th, 2018

Industry-Sponsored Research Management, October 2018


Industry-Sponsored Research Management, October 2018The following is a list of the articles that appear in the October 2018 issue of Industry-Sponsored Research Management monthly newsletter. 

If you are a current subscriber click here to log in and access your issue as well as your bonus webinar collection, Best Practices in Forming and Managing Industry-University Partnerships.

If you would like a free sample issue, click here.

Industry-Sponsored Research Management
Vol. 2, No. 10, October 2018

  • GEDI: A powerful connector to industry engagement opportunities at U Waterloo. When Canada’s leading university in innovation launched a new program called the “Global Entrepreneurship and Disruptive Innovation initiative,” the name itself seemed, well, short on innovation. So, they nicknamed it GEDI (pronounced Jedi). “Obviously, Star Wars is a big favorite of a lot of people,” said Rob Esselment, associate vice-president for government relations at the University of Waterloo. The name stuck and is now the commonly used name of the initiative.
  • Partnership Canvas provides systematic approach to industry collaborations. How appropriate that the partners in the development of a new tool “to systematically assess and develop different aspects of a strategic partnership” each represent one side of the university-industry “equation.”
  • New VA Tech Center for Industry Partnerships is off to a strong start. If you’re an organization designed to streamline and strengthen processes for corporate partnerships that’s less than a year old and you’ve already helped secure multi-million-dollar agreements with companies like Boeing and digital currency pioneer Block.one, you’ve got to be on the right track. Add to that a partnership with Mahindra Group, which has announced it will sponsor research in agricultural robotics, and Virginia Tech’s “LINK, the Center for Industry Partnerships” is clearly off to a strong start.
  • Nailing down collaboration details critical for long-term partnership program. When a university has a half-century of experience in collaborating with large, brand-name companies like Volvo, Ericsson, Saab, and ABB, they’ve had plenty of opportunity to develop best practices for university-industry engagement. Such is the case with Chalmers University of Technology in Gothenburg, Sweden.
  • Silo-busting holistic approach to engagement brings big results at U of Minnesota. Breaking down silos and barriers is a key component to facilitating successful corporate engagement with universities. The holistic approach — integrating efforts between departments and placing the industry partner’s needs at the center — has been put into practice at the University of Minnesota.
  • UC-Santa Cruz forges industry links with corporate-sponsored senior projects. While many companies sponsor graduate level research projects, it is far less common for undergraduates to get opportunities to solve real-world engineering problems in industry. Through the Baskin School of Engineering’s Corporate Sponsored Senior Project Program (CSSPP), the University of California at Santa Cruz is connecting college seniors and companies with an eye towards not only solving problems and creating innovative products, but also positioning students for employment after graduation.

Posted October 12th, 2018

Industry-Sponsored Research Management, September 2018


Industry-Sponsored Research Management, September 2018The following is a list of the articles that appear in the September 2018 issue of Industry-Sponsored Research Management monthly newsletter. 

If you are a current subscriber click here to log in and access your issue as well as your bonus webinar collection, Best Practices in Forming and Managing Industry-University Partnerships.

If you would like a free sample issue, click here.

Industry-Sponsored Research Management
Vol. 2, No. 9, September 2018

  • Corporate tiering strategies allow schools to focus engagement resources. There are just too many corporations out there for university departments charged with forming partnerships to cover them all — especially with limited resources. Many leaders agree that corporate tiering — a strategy for prioritizing companies that should be primary targets — is an extremely effective way to sharpen your focus.
  • New IP policy at Missouri S&T leads to increase in industry research. As many universities have discovered in the last 10 years, companies are getting more sophisticated — and demanding — about intellectual property (IP) when crafting research partnerships with universities. Like many schools, at the Missouri University of Science and Technology (S&T), the long held policy was that companies sponsored the research, the university owned the IP, and then the university licensed it back to the sponsor. But a policy change in 2013 added another new option.
  • Take a structured approach to recruiting alumni as corporate ‘liaisons.’ “The answer to anything when I’m meeting with corporations is ‘Yes, I can help you with that,’ said Eileen Murphy, PhD, senior director of corporate and foundation relations with Rutgers University Foundation, speaking to an audience of NACRO members at their annual meeting in July. And if the question is ‘can universities engage alumni in industry engagement,’ the answer is an even more resounding ‘yes.’
  • UC-Irvine, diagnostics firm form “unique” relationship in new collaboration. Press releases about new and different discoveries or strategies often contain the word “unique,” and those accustomed to reading them learn to take the claim with a grain of salt. Nonetheless, representatives of the University of California-Irvine and Beckman Coulter Diagnostics, Inc., make a good case that the relationship they have established is distinctly different from other corporate/university collaborations.
  • NJ launches one-stop web portal to showcase research, attract industry partners. The home to some of the nation’s best-known research universities, the state of New Jersey recently launched a collaborative web portal showcasing its faculty and their innovations in a bid to attract more industry partnerships and create new momentum for research-driven economic development in the state.

Posted September 13th, 2018

Industry-Sponsored Research Management, August 2018


Industry-Sponsored Research Management, July 2018The following is a list of the articles that appear in the August 2018 issue of Industry-Sponsored Research Management monthly newsletter. 

If you are a current subscriber click here to log in and access your issue as well as your bonus webinar collection, Best Practices in Forming and Managing Industry-University Partnerships.

If you would like a free sample issue, click here.

Industry-Sponsored Research Management
Vol. 2, No. 8, August 2018

  • How Ohio State centralizes information for corporate engagement. Many companies want a single point of contact at for their university partnering. For universities to be able to accommodate them, however, they need to gather information from all corporate-facing units — including separate schools, offices of sponsored research, tech transfer, foundations, and career services — and be able to present it to companies as a clear and comprehensive view of engagement activities.
  • Universities, corporations both reap the benefits of diversity programs. Why are diversity programs so important to both universities and corporations? Beyond the social justice considerations for espousing diverse student and faculty populations, both see a benefit to society and, specifically, to business.
  • Stanford’s faculty guide helps prepare researchers to work with industry. In what could be described as a best practice in educating and preparing faculty for industry-sponsored research arrangements, the Industrial Contracts Office (ICO) at Stanford University offers a slick, well-organized and comprehensive overview of corporate research partnerships.
  • Universities, businesses forming “super region” with Capital Co-LAB collaborative. In January 2018, nine university presidents from Washington DC, Baltimore, and Richmond, VA, attended a meeting with CEOs from the area’s leading companies. The nine had never all been together in the same room before, and some of them had never even met. But the meeting that ensued resulted in a university-business alliance — the Capital Co-LAB — that is working towards building an economic powerhouse in a previously economically and politically fragmented geographic area.

Posted August 14th, 2018

Industry-Sponsored Research Management, July 2018


Industry-Sponsored Research Management, July 2018The following is a list of the articles that appear in the July 2018 issue of Industry-Sponsored Research Management monthly newsletter. 

If you are a current subscriber click here to log in and access your issue as well as your bonus webinar collection, Best Practices in Forming and Managing Industry-University Partnerships.

If you would like a free sample issue, click here.

Industry-Sponsored Research Management
Vol. 2, No. 7, July 2018

  • What makes a great university research partner? Here’s what corporate execs want. How does a corporation define a “great” university partner? While on the one hand there can be as many definitions as there are companies, discussions with several corporate alliance managers indicate there is general agreement about what sits at the top of their lists — a university that shares common goals with its corporate partner, and one that is willing to offer them appropriate IP protection.
  • Use a comprehensive reporting process to solidify industry relationships. A standardized method for universities to report on their relationships with corporate partners may be the Holy Grail of corporate relations, but so far it has remained elusive. In lieu of such a find, universities are streamlining processes for gathering and reporting the details of their partnerships, with attention to the culture and structure of their own institution and customized to the specific needs of each corporate partner.
  • Use this top 10 list to host a successful corporate open house. Earlier this year, the University of Texas at Dallas hosted their second annual corporate open house. With representatives from over 100 companies attending, 2018’s open house was a successful continuation and expansion of their inaugural 2017 event.
  • The good, bad, and the ugly of research consortia. Here’s a multiple-choice question: Which is true? A) Consortia are great for universities, but for corporations, not so much. B) Yes, consortia can be good for universities, but they shouldn’t command a significant percentage of the time you spend on sponsored research. C) Consortia can be great for universities and corporations. The correct answer? All of the above — it just depends on the model you use, and what you put into your program.
  • Oakland U’s Mobilization Zone platform is front door for regional engagement. Not all universities have the research power of an MIT, a Carnegie Mellon, or a Stanford – and some are worlds away from that sort of reputation — but that doesn’t mean they can’t make the most of their faculty and student research in both commercialization and corporate partnerships.

Posted July 17th, 2018

Industry-Sponsored Research Management, June 2018


Industry-Sponsored Research Management, June 2018The following is a list of the articles that appear in the June 2018 issue of Industry-Sponsored Research Management monthly newsletter. 

If you are a current subscriber click here to log in and access your issue as well as your bonus webinar collection, Best Practices in Forming and Managing Industry-University Partnerships.

If you would like a free sample issue, click here.

Industry-Sponsored Research Management
Vol. 2, No. 6, June 2018

  • U Kentucky’s Expedited IP Track offers ‘partner-friendly’ approach. In an effort to streamline sponsored research agreements, the University of Kentucky Office of Technology Commercialization (OTC) and the UK Office of Sponsored Projects Administration (OSPA) are jointly piloting an “Expedited IP Track” program for corporate research partners.
  • Fred Hutch at center of three-way partnership to accelerate early stage innovations. When Dr. Gary Gilliland arrived at the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center as its new president and director in January 2015, he announced that the center would cure cancer by 2025.
  • ‘Summit’ brings industry, universities, and VCs together for creative collaboration. “In a bi-level meeting, where venture capitalists are talking to pharma or academia, everyone knows who’s shaking who down for money,” says Alex Szidon, PhD, associate vice president for business development and licensing at pharma giant Merck & Co. in its San Francisco office. “[But] if you have VC, pharma, and academia all talking technologies, you unlace who the funder is and shift the discussion more towards the problem.”
  • Kansas State’s strategies bring 80% increase in industry-funded research. Under its stated vision to become a Top-50 public research university by 2025, K-State has implemented an array of initiatives to achieve this objective, and a big part of that has been focused on building strategic partnerships with industry.
  • Crick Institute’s ‘Discovery without Boundaries’ mission leads to open collaboration. On a bright, sunny day in July 2014, 100 researchers and staff from the Francis Crick Institute and GlaxoSmithKline took a tour of the London Zoo.
  • Effective Non-Disclosure Agreements support better communication with partners. As universities and industry navigate the delicate dance of research collaboration, one important component of working together is establishing effective non-disclosure agreements to allow for the sharing of knowledge between the two sides of a partnership.

Posted June 15th, 2018

Industry-Sponsored Research Management, May 2018


Industry-Sponsored Research Management, May 2018The following is a list of the articles that appear in the May 2018 issue of Industry-Sponsored Research Management monthly newsletter. 

If you are a current subscriber click here to log in and access your issue as well as your bonus webinar collection, Best Practices in Forming and Managing Industry-University Partnerships.

If you would like a free copy of the premiere issue, click here.

Industry-Sponsored Research Management
Vol. 2, No. 5, May 2018

  • Offsite company liaisons keep industry-sponsored research ties strong. Posting an industry-academia collaboration executive offsite — closer to potential research partners than to campus — can pay off if the job is carefully designed and the person who holds it is right for it; the benefits in terms of staying connected to current and potential research sponsors can be enormous. But those benefits can be hard to actually quantify, and maintaining those positions poses a communications challenge as well as an expense that’s all too easy to calculate. For many schools, those factors outweigh the upside.
  • Typical metrics for corporate engagement only tell part of the story. Industry-sponsored research metrics ain’t what they used to be. Simply counting private company contract dollars coming in minus research-related expense dollars going out doesn’t come close to effectively measuring the impact of today’s more holistic approaches to industry-academia collaboration, and experts say new methods are needed to determine whether the more comprehensive ways of interacting are actually meeting everyone’s needs. Universities are now answering that call, coming up with new ways to measure what matters most to them, based on all the aspects of their relationships with corporate partners.
  • Patent infringement risks may be few, but don’t ignore them in industry partnerships. How much risk of patent infringement is associated with industry-sponsored research? For garden variety deals — company supports work in principal investigator’s lab, school licenses discoveries to company — not much, say attorneys and other experts. But some of the subtler set-ups between schools and private industry might make patent infringement a bigger problem, they caution, because they involve closer contact between researchers and corporations.
  • Expanding research relationships requires commitment on both sides. Pennsylvania State University has scored a big win with a dramatic expansion of an existing relationship into a platform innovation partnership that includes a five year commitment in the form of a Master Research Agreement. Imerys, a mineral-based industrial solutions company, signed the five-year Master SRA that expands its relationship with the school’s Materials Research Institute to include “the development of new technologies, materials and other intellectual property.”

Posted May 22nd, 2018

Industry-Sponsored Research Management, April 2018


The following is a list of the articles that appear in the April 2018 issue of Industry-Sponsored Research Management monthly newsletter. 

If you are a current subscriber click here to log in and access your issue as well as your bonus webinar collection, Best Practices in Forming and Managing Industry-University Partnerships.

If you would like a free copy of the premiere issue, click here.

Industry-Sponsored Research Management
Vol. 2, No. 4, April 2018

  • Fabric institute’s one-stop licensing initiative bundles background university IP. The One-Stop Licensing Initiative now being tested at the Cambridge, MA-based Advanced Functional Fabrics of America Institute includes access to aggregated background intellectual property from its university members — including its host, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.
  • Business plan competition transformed into path to industry partnerships. A basic business plan competition at the Washington University in St. Louis School of Medicine has been re-engineered into a months-long sponsored program for academic researchers and corporations that’s “more collaborative and engaging.”
  • Research potential partners and broaden your pitch to include holistic engagement. To make the most of the multiplying opportunities for face-to-face meetings with potential research collaborators, do your homework in advance.
  • Pfizer’s ITEN fosters early research ties with university partners. Pfizer Inc. has added a collaborative drug discovery model to its academic partnerships menu, aimed at the very earliest stages of research and focused more on relationship-building than on commercializing specific new compounds.
  • Incyte collaboration with Vanderbilt is all about the connection, not just funding. Research collaborations between universities and corporations are not always perfectly constructed or designed from the start. And just as a start-up company often needs to evolve, pivot, and iterate, so too do industry-academic partnerships in many cases.
  • Telecom Italia reports success with Joint Open Labs program. Telecom Italia, Italy’s largest telecommunications company, says it’s succeeding so far with a new approach to collaborative research that places the company’s researchers on partner university campuses.

Posted April 18th, 2018

Industry-Sponsored Research Management, March 2018


Industry-Sponsored Research Management, March 2018The following is a list of the articles that appear in the March 2018 issue of Industry-Sponsored Research Management monthly newsletter. 

If you are a current subscriber click here to log in and access your issue as well as your bonus webinar collection, Best Practices in Forming and Managing Industry-University Partnerships.

If you would like a free copy of the premiere issue, click here.

Industry-Sponsored Research Management
Vol. 2, No. 3, March 2018

  • UGA’s new Industry Express program removes friction from corporate partnerships. The University of Georgia has joined the ranks of schools revamping their intellectual property policies to streamline and smooth the path to more industry sponsorships.
  • Tulane “immersion program” uses tourism draw to create industry relationships. The pitch is appropriately seductive: “What if you could work with us from your personal Tulane office?” The come-on continues by pointing out that in New Orleans you can “brainstorm over cafe au lait and beignets, a fantastic jazz set or dinner prepared by a James Beard Foundation Award-winning chef — or experience culinary chemistry in the form of an innovative cocktail hour hand-crafted by one of our world-renowned ‘star-tenders.’”
  • TriNetX, other networks offer boost in sponsored clinical trials and pharma connections. It’s a problem many universities would love to have: After signing up with an external network that arranges sponsored clinical trials, that form of sponsored research increased so much and so rapidly that more infrastructure is needed.
  • UNL seed fund fosters external partnerships with eye on sponsored research. A new seed funding program at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln aims to assist faculty in forging partnerships with community entities, pairings that research leaders hope will lead to sponsored research collaborations.
  • Maximize the impact of centers and institutes on partnership opportunities. The specialty centers and institutes that dot — sometimes dominate — the research enterprise landscape at many universities are seeing their profiles rise and their influence expand as their host institutions pivot to a fuller focus on industry-academia collaboration.

Posted March 13th, 2018

Industry-Sponsored Research Management, February 2018


Industry-Sponsored Research Management, February 2018The following is a list of the articles that appear in the February 2018 issue of Industry-Sponsored Research Management monthly newsletter. 

If you are a current subscriber click here to log in and access your issue as well as your bonus webinar collection, Best Practices in Forming and Managing Industry-University Partnerships.

If you would like a free copy of the premiere issue, click here.

Industry-Sponsored Research Management
Vol. 2, No. 2, February 2018

  • Industry research contracts getting more complex, require a more flexible approach. The contracts that govern industry-sponsored research agreements are more challenging to negotiate than they used to be, and they’ll probably be more challenging still in the future — because sponsored research itself keeps getting more complex, sophisticated and diverse, contracting experts say.
  • Schools and sponsors agree: Faculty need to know their role in IP protection. Intellectual property issues in industry-sponsored research are complicated to begin with, and contractual terms for protecting IP are often critical to the corporate partner. While university contract negotiators may agree to the terms and conditions, there could be a huge chink in the school’s IP protection armor — their own faculty researchers’ relative ignorance of IP issues and rules — that could bring a world of problems to those overseeing industry partnerships.
  • UT-Arlington’s strategic plan integrates push for industry partnerships. When the University of Texas at Arlington research enterprise set out to refocus its efforts in line with the school’s Strategic Plan 2020: Bold Solutions Global Impact, the focus first was on people. The school has now attained warp speed in its plan implementation efforts, and President Vistasp Karbhari, PhD, tells Industry-Sponsored Research Management that “most of the changes focus on sponsored research.”
  • Innovation roadmaps help universities and industry identify partnership opportunities. A growing number of universities and industry groups are spending considerable time and effort to create detailed reports on economic trends, business development, and research and innovation capabilities, providing a platform to relate sponsored research activity directly to economic development.

Posted February 9th, 2018