FITT Toolbox: Technology Transfer Follow-up Committee

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The Technology transfer follow-up committee was set up for analysis of transfer actions in order to find the best transfer strategy. Projects such as start-up creation, industrial partnership, open source diffusion and others are examined by an advisory committee, which provides feedback and recommendations for the choice of strategy and allocation of resources. The composition and work of the committee have already proved to bring added value to the performance of the public research oganisation regarding technology transfer.

www.FITT-for-Innovation.eu

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FITT Toolbox: Technology Transfer Follow-up Committee

  1. 1. Technology Transfer Follow-up Committee FITT – Fostering Interregional Exchange in ICT Technology Transfer – www.FITT-for-Innovation.eu Except where otherwise noted, this work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License.
  2. 2. A committee to follow-up transfer actions Technology transfer actions concerned:  Startup creation projects  Industrial partnerships with transfer of assets (license or assignment)  Industrial partnerships with transfer of competences (expertise)  Participation to standardization actions within a transfer action  An open source diffusions of an important INRIA code base  Exit solutions for open source consortium led by INRIA Committee is advisory for the INRIA Transfer department:  go/no go (initialization and follow-up)  transfer strategy adoption  asking for an opportunity/feasibility study  allocation of resources for maturation if needed2 | February 2010 Technology Transfer Follow-up Committee
  3. 3. A committee to follow-up transfer actions  Composition:  3 INRIA people  1 INRIA -Transfert  4 senior private experts:  two competitiveness clusters: Systematic, Minalogic,  1 private company – Mandriva  1 from EPFL (Switzerland)  national agency for innovation – OSEO  When: one meeting every two months  Process:  Template description of the project built by the researcher, TT officer and Sectoral TT Associate (available in the FITT toolbox)  Submission sent a few days before the meeting (no late submission)  A collaborative tool allows the follow-up by all the staff concerned3 | February 2010 Technology Transfer Follow-up Committee
  4. 4. Template description Three types of description:4 | February 2010 Technology Transfer Follow-up Committee
  5. 5. When & where? Timing  Follow-up committee created in January 2009  5 meetings held in 2009, 5 meetings expected in 2010  45 transfer projects analysed in 2009 Location  in Paris  organised at the national level, the committee reviews and follows up all technology transfer operations of the eight INRIA research centres5 | February 2010 Technology Transfer Follow-up Committee
  6. 6. Who? Stakeholders  Before the committee meeting: researcher(s), a regional TT officer, the responsible of technology transfer in an application domain  Preparation of the transfer case: file should be understandable and analysable by the committee (no oral presentation of the case by project leader)  During the committee meeting:  People from INRIA: Transfer and Innovation director, Transfer Strategies manager, Technological Development director  IT-Translation director: specialized in start-up creation  Private sector experts: 2 people from “Competitiveness clusters” (System@tic, Minalogic), 1 from EPFL (CH), 1 private company CEO, 1 person from OSEO6 | February 2010 Technology Transfer Follow-up Committee
  7. 7. Pros & Cons PROs CONs  Transfer oriented mind  An approach which is not easily scalable  Continuous process (no call for projects)  Synchronization to be done with other committees  Co-design and follow-up logic  Difficult to choose the experts, who must  Project management goal and early analysis be legitimate to “kill” the transfer projects  Not a funding booth  Risk of excessive formalization of the process.  Reduction of uncertainties7 | February 2010 Technology Transfer Follow-up Committee
  8. 8. Why ? (1/3)  Rationale: The Technology Transfer Follow-up Committee has been created in order to:  Have a clear and coherent view of all the transfer operations conducted by a large PRO (managing 170 research teams)  Impose professionalization of the different stakeholders, who are now obliged to follow a path with clear guidelines, avoiding evident don’ts  Have an access to advice from experts from the private sector (closer to the market than the TT officers)8 | February 2010 Technology Transfer Follow-up Committee
  9. 9. Why ? (2/3)  Rationale: The Technology Transfer Follow-up Committee analyses and  Does a follow-up: according to their maturity, transfer project are meant to be submitted more than once, which ensures the control of implementation of recommendations made by the committee  The new dynamics has been created and it results in collective brainstorming sessions to decide on the best transfer strategy to be applied (which is not always the one that guarantees the best ROI)  TT officer and researchers are not left alone facing difficulties of transfer operations. Source: Microsoft Office Images Clipart9 | February 2010 Technology Transfer Follow-up Committee
  10. 10. Why ? (2/3)  Impact:  Committee started slowly as at first TT officers could feel excluded from the decision process and were afraid of a “selection”  After a couple of months, the majority of TT officers understood the advantages of submitting their transfer projects to the committee, which showed to deliver useful recommendations and to do a real follow-up.  Transfer projects submissions are now tooSource: Microsoft Office Images Clipart numerous: people got convinced of the committee added value! 10 | February 2010 Technology Transfer Follow-up Committee
  11. 11. Lessons Learned  Added value of private external experts having experience in technology transfer at large  A formalized process allowing people to brainstorm on elaborated transfer projects in search of more professional behaviour (asking themselves a lot of questions on the strategy)  The need to go beyond evidence or conditioned reflex and to adopt a real strategy which can be followed up11 | February 2010 Technology Transfer Follow-up Committee
  12. 12. Suggested Readings  Link to bibliography:  Link to code book: Opportunity Assessment Transfer strategy Start-up creation Exploitation External experts  Link to related websites: www.inria-transfert.fr www.inria.fr/valorisation/index.fr12 | February 2010 Technology Transfer Follow-up Committee

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