Non-traditional technology transfer
Paul J. Mallon, The University of Arizona, United States
The University of Arizona . Awarded
The concept of industry transferring work to academia is developed and studied using multiple cases at three different university research sites. Industry sometimes partners with academia specifically to have academia perform work with certain equipments or obtain knowledge for the purpose of process, product or knowledge development. The term "non-traditional" technology transfer is introduced to describe this activity. Case studies using research faculty and their students as well as industry partners were conducted at two Engineering Research Centers and an engineering department of a relatively smaller institution that has developed an engineering clinic approach to research. The literature drawn upon includes: historical perspectives of the academia-industry technology transfer arena (including the Bayh-Dole Act of 1980), trends, the relationship between academic capitalism and technology transfer and the role played by technology transfer in environmental research. Findings of this study indicate that industry has, in some cases, chosen to have their collaborative research team partners accomplish work for them. Access to resultant data is difficult to obtain and has implications for the concept of academic freedom. Advantages of the technology transfer process include the generation of value for each of the project partners, education of graduate and undergraduate students and benefits to the public good in terms of the environment; disadvantages are identified but considered uncertain. Technology transfer, including the non-traditional type defined herein, can be used as a tool to overcome the reality of today's austere university budget environment; the Bayh-Dole Act has served as an enabler of that approach.
Mallon, P.J. Non-traditional technology transfer. Ph.D. thesis, The University of Arizona.
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