Authors: Josephine Johnston
Addresses: The Hastings Center, 21 Malcolm Gordon Road, Garrison, NY 10524, USA
Abstract: In this article, I argue that some academic technology transfer professionals are rethinking their mission, their models of success, and their public message. In particular, they are beginning to orientate their activities to take account more explicitly of the missions of academic institutions, the stated purposes of publicly funded research, and the goal of legislation governing academic patenting and licensing. Focusing on health-related technology transfer activities, which have attracted some of the strongest criticism, I review existing, emerging, and suggested practices aimed not at maximising profit but at maximising the social benefit of academic research, some of which employ sophisticated licensing of patented academic inventions and discoveries. These practices, I will argue, should be considered and, where appropriate, employed by academic technology transfer offices, both because they aim to secure a moral good and because they will help academic technology transfer offices achieve a kind of success that closely mirrors the missions of their institutions.
Keywords: academic technology transfer; Bayh-Dole Act; patenting practices; licensing practices; patents; social benefit; universities; health.
International Journal of Biotechnology, 2007 Vol.9 No.2, pp.156 - 171
Published online: 06 Apr 2007 *Full-text access for editors Access for subscribers Purchase this article Comment on this article