Category Archives: Innovation

Government Interest Patent Activity 1976 to 2016, Part 4

In a portfolio model, 1 invention in 200 becoming a commercial product is acceptable, if the 1 is a big hit. In an agent model, 1 in 200 is unacceptable and borders on malpractice or fraud unless inventors willingly turn … Continue reading

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Free Competition and Enterprise in Bayh-Dole

One reason that Bayh-Dole is so difficult to parse is that there are multiple levels at work. It’s easier to just say that Bayh-Dole gives universities ownership of inventions made with federal support, and they can do anything they want … Continue reading

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Affordances, Innovation, and University Patents

I first hit affordances in Don Norman’s book The Design of Everyday Things. Here’s some key points: The term affordance refers to the relationship between a physical object and a person . . . . An affordance is a relationship between … Continue reading

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University technology transfer as an import function

Here is Carlo Marco Belfanti, on “Guilds, Patents, and the Circulation of Technical Knowledge“: In 1554 the Republic of Lucca established a special office, the Offizio sopra le Nuove Arti, to undertake the task of “examining the ways of introducing … Continue reading

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Research Monopolies and Development Monopolies

Here is one thing that I don’t understand about the standard distinction between research and development and how all this fits into ideas about commercialization. Let’s say that research produces a result that is immediately useful. Isn’t the research then development? … Continue reading

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Research and Development

In 2 CFR 215 (Circular A-110), we find definitions of research and development (dd): Research and development means all research activities, both basic and applied, and all development activities that are supported at universities, colleges, and other non-profit institutions. This … Continue reading

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Was Vannevar Bush So Wrong?

Over at Science of Science Policy there’s more discussion of Vannevar Bush, this time attributing to Bush the “linear model” of innovation that asserts that basic research leads to discoveries that applied research then prepares for development into commercial products, … Continue reading

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Behind the Usual Narrative, Part II

Bush’s Idea Vannevar Bush’s Science the Endless Frontier argues that the federal government has a proper role to play in advancing scientific research by supporting both research and scientific education. “The Federal Government,” writes Bush, “should accept new responsibilities for … Continue reading

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Active Latency Innovation

In The Lever of Riches: Technological Creativity and Economic Progress, Joel Mokyr works through an economic history of technological change. He observes that sometimes changes happen incrementally, and sometimes with a sort of “macro” leap. It appears that in some … Continue reading

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Bayh-Dole, the franken-sausage god

The full title is: Bayh-Dole, the franken-sausage god that destroyed private initiative and the federal research commons, eliminated subvention from university research policy and failed to create a public covenant to use research inventions to develop new products and create new industries … Continue reading

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