Support on Intellectual Property Rights (IPR) in applications
Researchers at KTH who are engaged in research collaboration should have a basic understanding of IPR (Intellectual Property Rights). Research Support Office provides support for writing applications for research funding that most likely will generate IP. A well formulated IP-plan may also strengthen the impact of the research collaboration outcome.
KTH Innovation can provide support for formulating an early stage IP-plan and follow through the various project phases until the research results will be commercialized into a patent/product or technology transfer to industry.
IPR is a central issue through all phases of a research project and planning for how to handle the outcome should be addressed already from the start.
According to the Professor´s privilege, the researcher is the owner of the research results and thus the IPR. Therefore, researchers are obliged to sign a contract with KTH in order for KTH to negotiate with an external partner on how to manage the IPR. More details about this process can be found in the web pages of the Legal Office.
Intellectual Property Rights in brief:
- Copyright for protecting an artist or producer´s rights for e.g music, film, source code for software etc. The copyright lasts for 70 years.
- Patents, most often relevant for researchers to protect a new, technical solution. A patent lasts maximum 20 years.
- Brand protection, of a product, service or company name and content.
- Design protection, protects the appearance and shape of a product.
The KTH IP-policy (in Swedish) provides a framework for how KTH acts in these matters.
An IP-plan should cover resources for creating, developing and potentially commersialising results. The IP-plan should regulate and give structure to e.g. activities related to the IP management (what, how, when and by whom). The most important components and activities of an IP plan are listed below. The IP management will depend on the organization that generates it.
What should be considered?
- Check all documents for the call and make sure that you are aware of the IP regulations when writing an application. Find out if there are any specific IP regulations tied to the program or the funding agency. When a project is approved, you will in most cases need to sign a contract on the research collaboration. Issues related to IP are negotiated in this contract before the collaboration project starts.
- Management – When initiating a project or establishing a centre, it is crucial that a structure for managing results and IP is in place. How will you manage IP-policies, routines, responsibilities, processes etc. in the organization? Problems related to how results should be managed could be avoided if addressed in the initial phases.
- How will you assess the potential and/or value created and how will you handle this? The practical implementation requires both competence and an organizational structure.
- How will you secure and protect the IP patents? For KTH the publication of research results is central but it could become a conflict of interest for partners in a research collaboration initiative if results need to be protected to enable an application for patent.
More information and support is available at the EU commission website www.iprhelpdesk.eu/ . You can find guidelines on managing IP in contracts and IP in H2020-projects www.iprhelpdesk.eu/IP-Guides .