Category Archives: History

Mick Stadler writes a letter in 1976 on “effective transfer mechanisms”–1

On June 29, 1976 Mick Stadler wrote a letter to Willard Marcy, the Vice President of Research Corporation’s Patent Program. Stadler, at the time was assistant director of the Case Western Reserve technology transfer program. He would go on to … Continue reading

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Harbridge House on university exclusive licensing, 2

There’s one more thing raised by the Harbridge House report–the metrics on those patent development firms. Patent applications are filed on approximately 10 to 15 percent of the disclosures submitted and, if present circumstances continue, only one-quarter of these patents … Continue reading

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Harbridge House on university exclusive licensing, 1

The Harbridge House report on government patent policy in 1968 laid the foundation for Bayh-Dole. Or, rather, federal officials selectively used portions of the report to change federal policy to conform to the wishes of patent development firms affiliated with … Continue reading

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The point at which federal patent policy in 1971 broke from public interest

Here’s the point at which federal patent policy broke from the public interest. In 1971, President Nixon revised the Kennedy patent policy. One of the revisions was to the federal disposition of inventions. Here’s Kennedy: Government-owned patents shall be made … Continue reading

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Madison on the patent clause–and Young Frankenstein

James Madison, writing in the Federalist (43), discusses the Constitution’s patent clause. The discussion is brief, so here it is, with comments: A power “to promote the progress of science and useful arts, by securing, for a limited time, to … Continue reading

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A sense of proportion–5

One can see, then, where Bayh-Dole comes into play in this meaningless mess. Bayh-Dole was drafted by the same folks who created the IPA system. The IPA system was shut down in 1978 as ineffective and contrary to public policy. … Continue reading

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A sense of proportion–4

To lay it out in bullet points, the now dominant university patent-based approach to research inventions defaulting to exclusive licenses: fragments invention platforms with no way to restore them attracts speculative investors while pushing away companies raises barriers to early … Continue reading

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A sense of proportion–3

Prior to federal funding becoming the dominant source of university research funding, most universities operated their invention policies with a review committee that made recommendations to the university president with regard to particular inventions. The volume of invention reporting was … Continue reading

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A sense of proportion–2

University administrators have engaged in a thirty-year effort of research invention management that creates patent gridlock for what amounts to a tiny bit of the overall inventive activity in the country. That’s the black border area on this nice blue … Continue reading

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A sense of proportion–1

“If life is going to exist in a universe this size, the one thing it cannot afford to have is a sense of proportion.” —Douglas Adams, Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy In the Bayh-Dole era–1981 to the present–the US Patent … Continue reading

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