Author Archives: Rebecca Stoughton

Tracking Tech Transfer’s Indirect Metrics

As Laura Schoppe noted in her post about the key direct metrics for technology transfer offices (TTOs), there are important indirect metrics to track as well. These are factors that the TTO can influence, but others have more control over the ultimate outcome. Some feed into the early stages of the tech transfer pipeline in terms of the quantity and quality of invention disclosures. These indirect metrics also relate to economic development, which seems to be growing in importance every year. So, today’s post outlines the indirect metrics that are appropriate for various TTOs. Continue reading

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Best Practices for Technology Briefings for Tech Transfer

Technology briefings can be a cost-effective way for a technology transfer office (TTO) to reach potential licensees and partners. These briefings typically include a technical presentation from the inventor as well as details on the licensing/partnering process from a TTO representative. Experience has shown that an online/webinar technology briefing: (1) can dramatically increase the efficiency of the marketing effort since it eliminates the need to convey the same information multiple times in individual discussions, (2) allows you to set a specific timeline for receiving and selecting licensing/partnering applications, and (3) eliminates travel costs and provides a recording to post for interested parties who missed the live event. Of course, technology briefings require extensive planning and preparation. And not every innovation is suited to a technology briefing. For the greatest success, Fuentek offers the following advice. Continue reading

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Found in Translation: Insights on Gap Funding for Tech Transfer

Photo courtesy of Jason Powell of the University of Vermont • Used with permissionWant to pack a room? Talk about gap funding at the Eastern Region Meeting (ERM) of the Association of University Technology Managers (AUTM®). Recently I had the pleasure of moderating the “Found in Translation: Making the Most of Gap Funding” session at AUTM-ERM with four panelists: Richard Chylla of Michigan State University, Corine Farewell of the University of Vermont (UVM), Marc Sedam of the University of New Hampshire, and Todd Sherer of Emory University. In sharing their experience and insights, these panelists represented a diversity of perspectives… Continue reading

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How to Get the Best Market Feedback for Tech Transfer Licensing

Fuentek VP Becky Stoughton at the Alpha Loft Launch Series event in Manchester, NH.Lots of best practices for technology transfer offices (TTOs) also apply to startups. To leverage that insight, I recently spoke with entrepreneurs in New Hampshire about how to get great feedback from prospective customers when getting a startup off the ground, offering a new product (or service), or breaking into a new market. Similarly, in the tech transfer world, licensing success can be optimized by obtaining robust and comprehensive market feedback through expert interviews. This feedback will inform your strategy for approaching the market as you ramp up to marketing a technology for licensing. For example,… Continue reading

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IP Portfolio Optimization: How Does Your Garden Grow?

PrintI’ve been thinking a lot lately about the similarities between gardening and managing a portfolio of intellectual property (IP). If you have seen our Cultivating Your IP infographic, this comparison isn’t surprising. But the connection is worth considering. Periodically reviewing the IP portfolio is an essential part of tending to the technologies effectively. Today I’m discussing the approach to and process of reviewing the IP portfolio. Prioritize the Backlog: What’s Dead, What’s Ready to Plant? Having worked with dozens of technology transfer offices (TTOs), Fuentek knows it’s easy for invention disclosures to pile up like plants in a greenhouse waiting to be put in the garden. Continue reading

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Post Yourself at the Researcher Revolving Door: Advice for Technology Transfer

RevolvingDoor_iStock_000007542909Last month, Technology Transfer Tactics ran an in-depth article on best practices for handling departing faculty researchers, post-docs, visiting researchers, and the like. As one of the sources quoted, I was pleased to see the thorough treatment this topic received, because bad things can happen if you don’t stay in front of intellectual property (IP) issues when it comes to transitioning faculty…. There was a lot of great advice in the article. Here’s my take on a few key recommendations. Continue reading

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Using the IP Management Database to Answer Metrics FAQs

FAQ-crossword_iStock_000017784335_lowrezMost technology transfer offices (TTOs) want to — or have to — respond to frequently asked questions (FAQs) about the technology portfolio. Whether they are routine or ad hoc, these FAQs often come from key stakeholders and focus on TTO performance. As the F in FAQ suggests, these questions are asked frequently. Yet if a TTO frequently is scrambling to answer and struggles to generate the needed reports, then this indicates something is amiss. Continue reading

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5 Keys to Tech Transfer “Reboot” Success

red-reboot_iStock_000050491100_lowrezI’ve blogged before about technology transfer offices (TTOs) that are entering a new phase of life. Today I’d like to share Fuentek’s recommendations for the top of your To-Do List for rebooting a TTO. These are based both on what we’ve done for our clients and on my personal experience in the trenches at the Office of Technology Commercialization (OTC) at the University of Texas at Dallas. Continue reading

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Lean Startup Principles Apply to Tech Transfer: A Dispatch from Poland

As I find myself back in Poland to deliver another round of training courses on entrepreneurship to university researchers, I’m reminded of Steve Blank’s fireside chat at the AUTM® national meeting in New Orleans last month. Specifically, I’m thinking about how the feedback loop that plays a major role in the Lean Startup methodology also has a role to play long before a startup is even a gleam in an entrepreneurial researcher’s eye. What’s the Lean Startup feedback loop? Well, according to Eric Ries: “The fundamental activity of a startup is to turn ideas into products, measure how customers respond, and then learn whether to pivot or persevere. All successful startup processes should be geared to accelerate that feedback loop.” Continue reading

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Survey Results from (Re)New Technology Transfer Offices (TTOs)

Questionnaire conceptAs I discussed in early December, I’ve been curious about the experiences of those starting (or restarting) their TTO. So we created a short survey and invited the tech transfer community to use it to share their experiences. Two dozen folks responded — not bad considering it is a niche question– and today I’m sharing these responses along with some of my insights and experiences. Continue reading

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