DC Dispatch - September 18, 2015

DC Dispatch - September 18, 2015

DC Dispatch

AUTM Licensing Activity Survey – 2014 Highlights

The Association of University Technology Managers (AUTM) has released: the U.S. highlights of its 2014 Licensing Activity Survey offering “quantitative data and real-world examples about licensing activities at U.S. and Canadian universities, hospitals and research institutions.” From the web site, “[H]ighlights of the AUTM U.S. Licensing Activity Survey: FY2014 provide a preview of the data found in the comprehensive FY2014 report. It offers a glimpse into the current state of the technology transfer field. That comprehensive AUTM U.S. Licensing Activity Survey: FY2014 will be published later this year and supplemented with additional stories about technology transfer’s ability to improve lives and boost economies.

Highlights include:

  • 5,435 licenses executed (up 4.5% over prior year)
  • 1,461 options executed (up 7.7%)
  • 549 executed licenses containing equity (up 17%)
  • 914 startup companies formed (up 12%)
  • 4,688 startups still operating as of the end of FY2014 (up 11.4%)
  • 965 new commercial products created (up $34.2%)
  • 6,363 U.S. patents issued (up 11%)”

While there is a fee for the full report with appendices, you can find a free copy of the highlights report here. (Original Sources: AUTM web site)

Kaufmann Index of Entrepreneurial Activity
(Focus on Startup Activity)

The Kaufmann Foundation has released: the 2015 Kaufmann Index: Startup Activity report, a more refined version of activity in states and metro areas of its annual report on national statistics (released in the spring). From the press release, “[S]tartup activity bounced upward in 32 of the 50 U.S. states last year, and 18 of the nation’s top 40 metropolitan areas also saw increases in new venture activity, according to the 2015 Kauffman Index: Startup Activity.… Although startup activity tended to be highest in the western and southern states overall, the five states that ranked at the top of the 2015 Index were Montana, Wyoming, North Dakota, Colorado and Vermont.” See the link for more details and other links to interactive sites comparing states and metro areas on various criteria. (Original Sources: Kaufmann Foundation web site)


2016 R&D Budget Update – as of 9/8/15
(Countdown to a CR)

AAAS has provided: an update of the current FY 2016 budget status – as of the time Congress returned from recess the week of September 7 (focused per usual on the R&D budget component). From their article, “[I]n spite of the constraints on discretionary spending [see the post for more details on the fight over discretionary funding levels vis–á–vis sequestration], appropriators have provided some gains to federal R&D. Per current AAAS estimates, House appropriations for R&D are 2.9 percent below the President’s request but still 3.4 percent or $4.7 billion above FY 2015 levels, while Senate appropriations have actually managed to match the request, granting a 6.5 percent or $8.9 billion increase above FY 2015. However, any consideration of Congressional decisions on science funding must recall that appropriators have been operating under sequestration-level caps for nondefense spending while adding an extra $35 billion or more to the Pentagon’s OCO [war funding] budget. This has helped to enable relatively large increases for defense R&D while funding for most nondefense R&D agencies is constrained. The preference for defense over nondefense R&D this cycle is reflected in breakdowns of R&D by character. The President’s budget sought an $8.9 billion increase in FY 2016, but two-thirds of this was entirely accounted for by an increase for DOD development activities. Development in the FY 2016 budget was slated for a 10 percent increase, with basic and applied research increased by less than three percent. It has been a similar story in appropriations so far.” To date, only 6 appropriations bills have passed the full House, and none the full Senate. See the link for an agency-by-agency status on the R&D budget process. (Original Sources: AAAS web site)

AAAS Seeks Nominations
(Early Career Award for Public Engagement in Science)

AAAS is soliciting nominations: for its Early Career Award for Public Engagement with Science, established in 2010, which “recognizes early-career scientists and engineers who demonstrate excellence in their contribution to public engagement with science activities.” From the web site, “public engagement activities are defined as the individual’s active participation in efforts to engage with the public on science- and technology-related issues and promote meaningful dialogue between science and society …” The eligibility requirements (noted on the link) indicate that nominees “must be a scientist or engineer actively conducting research in any scientific discipline (including social sciences and medicine) in academia, government (my emphasis) or industry. .. [and that types of public engagement] activities might include: informal science education, public outreach, public policy, and/or science communication activities, such as mass media, public dialogue, radio, TV and film, science café, science exhibit, science fair, and social and online media.” They also define “early career”. Deadline for nominations is October 15. (Original Sources: AAAS web site)

USPTO Launches New Patent Tool

The USPTO has just launched a new patent data visualization platform that “allows members of the public to interact with nearly 40 years of data on patenting activity in the United States.” From the web site, PatentsView “allows users explore technological, regional, and individual-level patent trends via search filters with multiple viewing options. The database links inventors, their organizations, locations, and overall patenting activity using enhanced 1976-2014 data from public USPTO bulk data files. Anyone can use PatentsView to examine the dynamics of inventor patenting activity over time and space while exploring patent technologies, assignees, citation patterns and co-inventor networks. The visualization platform encourages the study and understanding of the intellectual property (IP) and innovation system; serves as a fundamental function of the government in creating ‘public good’ platforms in these data; and eliminates wasteful and redundant cleaning, converting and matching of data by many individual researchers. PatentsView frees up researcher time to allow them to focus on what they do best—studying IP, innovation, and technological change.” (Original Sources: USPTO web site)

Spotlight on Member Activity
(Air Force Research Lab Tech Transfer Pilot Project)

The Air Force Research Lab (AFRL) has a new initiative: to support its tech transfer efforts. From an article in the Dayton Daily News, “[T]he Air Force wants assistance from educational or non-profit institutions to identify, catalog and rate intellectual property that could be used by warfighters and, in some cases, consumers, according to Bill Harrison, AFRL director of small business programs. … Under the up to $4.1 million AFRL initiative, organizations will electronically catalog technology, investigate how inventions and products might be manufactured, and train AFRL engineers about the tools and processes used in the program, among other directives, he said.” You can see the grant solicitation, with additional information, here. (Original Sources: Dayton Daily News web site, grants.gov web site)


Note: The DC Dispatch is a periodic update of selected items of interest to the FLC and technology transfer community – i.e., current legislation, trends, reports, policy and other developments potentially affecting technology transfer or related activities – designed to keep the community informed of relevant issues on a timely basis. Information is gleaned directly from a variety of sources (newsletters, email alerts, web sites, direct participation at events from the FLC DC Representative’s office, etc.) – with original sources, contacts and links provided.

Contact: Gary K. Jones, FLC DC Representative, gkjones.ctr@federallabs.org

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