University-Industry Collaboration in the UK by JYT808qI


									Academic Patenting in the UK

        Cornelia Lawson

         Collegio Carlo Alberto
          University of Torino

ESF‐APE‐INV 3rd “Name Game” workshop
     Brussels, 5‐6 September 2011

• Review of policies and institutional frameworks.
• Review of some existing data on Academic Patenting in the

• Evidence from two papers:
  • "Academic Patenting: Opportunity, Support or Attitude?"
    (Lawson, 2011)
  • "Who are the stars? Evidence from a sample of UK
    academic inventors” (Lawson and Sterzi, 2011)
Changing Research Environment in the UK

Growing policy debate in the 1990s has led to increasing
pressure to manage university IP (Lockett and Wright, 2005)
•HMT/DTI Consultation Paper (1998) "Innovating for the
Future: investing in R&D“ announces funding for exploitation
of university research.
•White Paper ”The Future of Higher Education” (2003) and
HMT ” Science & innovation investment framework 2004-
2014” (2004) set out goals for increased industry
involvement, spin-outs and cost effective universities.

Provisions by Universities:
Establishing internal agencies for IP Protection and licensing
(most TTOs founded since 1995)
Legal Framework for Academic Patenting

No Bayh-Dole like legislation in the UK.
But: In 1948 the National Research Development Corporation
was formed to commercialise inventions from public funded
research (became BTG).
Strengthening the universities: “The 1997 Patents Act states
that inventions of employees who may reasonably be expected
to make inventions are clearly owned by their employer, so
long as this is stated in an employment contract” (Lockett and
Wright, 2005)
•Some universities have very poorly drafted university IP
regulations and/or don’t enforce them.
•Patenting strategies vary considerably.
•Contracts between industry and universities / academics may
take precedence.
Developments in Academic Patenting

Year of start of commercialisation activities (Source: UNICO 2004)
• 30% of universities started their TTOs since 2000
• In 2004 80% of universities have at least 2 FTE working in TTO
Developments in Academic Patenting

Number of disclosures made by HEIs (Source: HEFCE 2009)
University Patents vs. University Invented Patents

Universities only recently started to demand rights over the
inventions of university researchers.
Patval Survey (Survey: 2003; Patents: 1993-1997)
•Almost 80% of university invented patents are not owned by
the university.
•4.8% of total patent numbers by academics.
•Problem: sample bias and low response rate

CBR Survey (Survey: 2009; Patents: 2005-2008)
•Over 25% of academics in engineering and more than 15% of
academics in biosciences patented during the 3 years.
•Problem: low response rate, particularly in engineering (8%)
Our Contribution 1
“Academic Patenting: Opportunity, Support or Attitude?”

• Unique longitudinal data on 479 engineering academics
  (subsample of dataset of more than 4000 academics)
• Focus on two aspects of University-Industry interaction:
  • Funding from industry (direct funding)
  • Patents by university inventors
• And analyse the importance of industry funds for academic
  • Can industry sponsors steer researchers towards
    commercialisation? (Agrawal and Henderson, 2002)
  • Can publications still be associated to patenting once we
    consider grant income?
“Academic Patenting: Opportunity, Support or Attitude?”

Database on UK engineering academics
•List of researchers in engineering from University Calendars
•EPO patents matched to names and at least first initial
•Filtering with 2nd/3rd initial, age, address, discipline, title etc.
•Results checked against Derwent World Patent index to
acquire cleaned and formatted data grouped around a base
•For 479 academics patents were collected from UKIPO
   • Calendars include all academics in each department with
     full names or all initials
   • Calendars available for most universities up to 1996
   • Commonwealth Universities Yearbook for all years
   • Not all universities have calendars or are CUA members
“Academic Patenting: Opportunity, Support or Attitude?”

• Inventors in original data (at least 6 years, 1985-2005)
  • 21% of 4019 publishing academics are inventors, while in
• Inventors in reduced data (479 academics)
  • 41% are inventors
  • Oldest UKIPO patent from 1964
  • 33% file a patent during observation period (1996-2007)
  • 32% only file one patent
  • 37% of patents are owned by universities
• Industry funding in reduced data
  • 21% of total funding (avg: 8626 GBP)
  • 260 academics are PI on at least one grant
“Academic Patenting: Opportunity, Support or Attitude?”
  Variables                                     ZINB             STCOX
                                          (2nd stage – NB)   (Frailty model)
  Pre-observation Patents                 0.071** (0.032)    0.11*** (0.036)
  Patent Stockt-1                         0.56*** (0.079)    0.22*** (0.050)
  0/1 Public fundingt-1                    0.35** (0.17)     0.46*** (0.16)
  ln(share of funding from industry)t-1    1.02*** (0.31)    0.86*** (0.30)
  ln(publications in last 3 years)t-1      0.098 (0.13)       0.17 (0.13)
  ln(avg JIF in last 3 years)t-1            0.31 (0.20)       0.42* (0.22)
  0/1 Professor inventort-1                0.84*** (0.22)     0.54** (0.25)
  Department Controls                          YES                YES
  Field FE                                     YES                YES
  Year FE                                      YES                YES
  Constant                                 -3.86* (2.11)
  Ln-alpha / Theta                             0.47*            0.67***
  Observations                                 4137              4137
  Zero Observations / Failures                 3853               284
Our Contribution 2
"Who are the stars? Evidence from a sample of UK academic inventors”

• Unique data on 622 academic inventors
• Focus on 3 categories of academic inventors:
  • Single inventors (48.5%)
  • One spell inventors (34%)
  • Stars (persistent inventors) (17.5%)
• And analyse those factors that lead to persistent academic
  invention activity.
  • Is initial success encouraging continuous involvement in
  • Does socialisation in industry or commercial orientiation of
     the PhD awarding institution lower the barriers for
     continuous patenting? (Dietz and Bozeman, 2005;
     Bercovitz and Feldman, 2008)
Our Contribution 2
"Who are the stars? Evidence from a sample of UK academic inventors”

The role of prolific academic (inventors)
•Positive effect on firm productivity
  • “Companies should make effort to retain and nurture
     these key contributors” Narin and Breitzman (1995)
•Positive effect on their peers
  • “Superstars are an irreplaceable source of ideas” Azoulay,
     Zivin and Wang (2010)
•Positive effect on knowledge exchange and diffusion
  • “Academics exchange information with more people and
     across more organizations” Breschi and Lissoni (2004)
"Who are the stars? Evidence from a sample of UK academic inventors”

CID Database on UK academic patents
•EP-INV database: names of inventors of patent applications at
EPO with UK address
•List of researchers in “hard sciences” from RAE 2001
•Filter out incongruous matches (age and discipline)
•Check for homonymy via e-mail
•5005 potential academic inventors
   • 2804 emails collected
   • 1079 answers
   • 622 positive (1622 patents)
  • RAE 2001: underestimation over number of academics
  • Right-censoring in 2001
  • Low response rate
        underestimation of academic inventors
            (only 2.8% of RAE academics)
"Who are the stars? Evidence from a sample of UK academic inventors”

                                (1)            (2)
                              LOGIT           OLT

Age                             0.34***       0.40***
Age2                            -0.001        0.0001
Female                           -0.29         -0.10
Scientific Quality              0.053**       0.076*

Department Quality               0.044         -0.24
Late start                     -0.264***     -0.42***
Training effect                  0.67*        0.78***
Foreign PhD                      0.13          0.086
Our Contribution 2
"Who are the stars? Evidence from a sample of UK academic inventors”

                                (1)            (2)
                              LOGIT           OLT
First patent quality           0.068**        0.13***
First patent granted            0.44           0.21
Academic                       1.46**         2.38***
University Applicant            -0.29          0.19
Solitary inventor               0.063          -0.01
Fields dummies                   Yes           Yes
Constant                       -7.11***
Cut 1                                         4.91***
Cut 2                                         8.44***
Pseudo R2                       0.32           0.41

Brant [p value]                               0.178

•Important to find reliable source for academics’ names.
•Calendars and CUA Yearbooks may be such sources
•Surveys for validation are not effective (especially in the UK)
Factors effecting patenting activity:
•Social imprinting is important
•Dynamic process – intial success may help
•Scientific ability (publications) not the best predictor

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