Tech Transfer Central
University-Industry Engagement Advisor

Improving Tech Transfer Efficiency and Value through a Formalized Stage-Gate Process

Format: Webinar, On-Demand Video/Transcript, or DVD
Tuesday, June 29, 2021 ~ 1:00-2:00 pm (Eastern Time)

Coronavirus update: Orders for all live programs will include up to five additional lines at no additional charge for staff within your organization who can attend remotely, and all live programs will include our digital package. Click here for more details.


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Price: $197
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Like many tech transfer offices, University of Minnesota’s Technology Commercialization Group used to struggle to evaluate and prioritize inventions in its large IP portfolio. In the “bad old days” decision-making was slow, hidden from view, and seemed to faculty arbitrary and unfair. Declining inventor satisfaction and engagement became a serious problem, and TTO leaders knew they had to make a change — and fast.

In 2008, they introduced a new stage gate process with several critical goals in mind: standardizing decision criteria, dramatically boosting response time, increasing documentation and transparency, and enhancing communication – all in an effort to improve consistency, service level, and customer satisfaction.

Each stage consists of a set of activities that is required prior to obtaining management approval to proceed through the gate to the next stage. This forces objective decision-making and a deliberate choice to reinvest in additional work and expenditures — all done transparently, and with the inventor engaged at each gate.

Over the past 13 years, the process has provided clarity and transparency on case status, as well as increased visibility and prioritization of planned marketing activities. The process also serves to pare technologies that are consuming time and resources but have little chance of achieving commercial success — allowing greater efficiency and focus on more promising innovations.

We’ve teamed up with leadership from UMN’s Technology Commercialization Group to present this detailed look at the stage gate system, and how other TTOs can adapt it for their own portfolios:

Improving Tech Transfer Efficiency and Value through a Formalized Stage-Gate Process

In this presentation you’ll receive a step-by-step overview of the UMN stage gate process and how it is used to improve efficiency, value, and faculty satisfaction. Here is a quick look at the agenda:

  • A look at the history and evolution of UMN’s stage gate process
  • Breakdown of the process
  • Review of the gate form document, defining stages and gates
  • Addition of a marketing decision to process
  • Portfolio management matrix and case classification
  • Vehicles to accelerate commercialization
  • How the stage gate increases efficiency and pares unproductive assets
  • How the process improves timeliness and customer satisfaction
  • Key challenges and lessons learned

Plus: Join in the Q&A to get your specific questions addressed.

After the live session, keep the on-demand video for future training and education

Meet your presenters:

Henry KostalikHenry Kostalik
Technology Portfolio Manager
Technology Commercialization Group
University of Minnesota

As a Technology Portfolio Manager, Henry  works with faculty to assess, protect, and develop commercialization strategies for their intellectual property. He came to the University of Minnesota in 2018 from 3M, where he spent 7 years in roles including product developer, project manager, and lab manager. In his most recent role as Commercialization Manager in 3M’s Commercial Solutions Division he was responsible for operational planning and prioritization, metrics analysis, global launch coordination and the cross-functional phase gate review process. Henry is a Certified Scrum Master and Product Owner and earned his PhD in chemistry from Cornell University.

Allison FerroAllison Ferro
Technology Portfolio Manager
Technology Commercialization Group
University of Minnesota

Allison Ferro joined Technology Commercialization in 2019 after almost two decades in the medical device industry. Most recently, she spent nine years managing the intellectual property and early stage technology development for ophthalmic diagnostics at Carl Zeiss Meditec, Inc. She started her career in product development with jobs at Lumenis and Ellex Medical, where she led the laser development for solid state photocoagulator lasers for ophthalmology. In between, she worked in strategic development at Nellcor Puritan Bennett (now part of Medtronic) evaluating new technologies for acquisition and licensing, and as a patent analyst for IP Checkups, a boutique patent analytics firm.

Allison enjoys working at the intersection of technology, business and law. She is experienced in evaluating early stage technologies, knowledgeable about intellectual property protection strategies, and understands what it takes to turn an idea into a product. Allison has a PhD in Physical Chemistry with a Certificate in Optics from the University of Colorado at Boulder.

Coronavirus update

In response to the spread of the COVID-19 virus and our customers’ efforts to minimize exposure through travel restrictions, at-home work, and reductions in internal gatherings for training and education, we are temporarily expanding our distance learning offerings to make all programs more accessible. Orders for all live programs will include up to five additional lines at no additional charge for staff within your organization who can attend remotely, and all live programs will include our digital package – the on-demand video and print transcript. These will be delivered soon after the live program with no extra fee. In the current climate resulting from pandemic control efforts, we hope these additional access options will help your organization continue to receive important professional education and training safely and regardless of travel and social distancing restrictions.

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Participation in the live webinar is just $197 per site and allows access to one computer for an unlimited number of people to watch. Gather your entire staff and watch for maximum benefit!

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