A review of ‘Intellectual Property Management and Conflicts of Interest’ published by the Higher Education Authority (HEA) last week will provide Waterford Institute of Technology (WIT) with an opportunity to review and possibly enhance its own IP framework.
“The Institute welcomes the comprehensive report on IP management and conflicts of interest,” said a WIT spokesperson.
“The Institute is one of Ireland’s leading research higher education institutes benefiting our students and stakeholders as well as driving the economic development of Waterford city and the south east region. WIT has a comprehensive research and IP management framework which is internationally benchmarked against best practice. The report provides an opportunity for WIT to review its own framework against the report recommendations with a view to enhancing it as required. We are committed to continue to drive the social and economic development of the region through our excellence in research and innovation.”
According to HEA Chief Executive, Dr Graham Love: “There has been rapid change within many of the higher education institutions in Ireland, with an increased emphasis on IP commercialisation and on enhancing links with industry. Good progress has been made, and the implementation of the recommendations of this Review will result in simpler and more accessible IP policies and more robust management procedures.”
In its own statement, the HEA, reflecting on a review co-authored by Knowledge Transfer Ireland (KTI) notes: “In Ireland, the system that supports commercialisation of institutions’ intellectual property has evolved rapidly over a short time. Significant developments have included the provision of funding for dedicated staff under the Technology Transfer Strengthening Initiative; the introduction of the National IP Protocol; and the creation of KTI to support system-wide knowledge transfer. All of this sits under the national Policy for Research Commercialisation, which was published in 2012.”
Said KTI Director, Dr Alison Campbell: “It is pleasing to note that the IP policies that underpin Ireland’s vibrant research commercialisation endeavours are broadly in line with international good practice. Working with the institutions to further simplify and strengthen local policies will bring greater consistency and clarity for stakeholders.” The Review has made 10 recommendations, primarily dealing with conflicts of interest and spin-out companies. “The process of implementing these recommendations has already commenced, and enhanced engagement is underway between HEA, KTI and other stakeholders with the aim of strengthening IP policies and procedures.”