Over at Open 3dp I have posted a manifesto piece on the problems I see developing in university practice in the area of 3d printing. Being part of an open research project makes it clear how much of a problem there really is with universities having IP policies fixated on compulsory ownership and coarse aspirations to “commercialization” by means of patent licensing. Universities wrap these aspirations in moralizing language about “ethics” and “duty” and “public benefit” and use “principles” as if bureaucratic urges can be recast as philosophy. It is beyond me.
I have been at this IP business for 20 years and I still don’t have a good account of how university administrators owning patent rights by compulsion contributes to innovation, economic vitality, or the public good. Is any such account possible? Or, is it enough to have flavorful rationalizations and superficial accounts of “how it is done”? Clearly there’s no explanation for how open models operate in such an IP regime. They don’t.