Posts Tagged: "R&D"

Fine Tuning the Trump Administration’s ROI Initiative

The Trump Administration’s Return on Investment (ROI) Initiative, which is geared toward increasing the American taxpayer’s benefits from federally-supported R&D, is potentially a big step forward. The draft recommendations were contained in a “Green Paper” open for public comment until January 9, 2019. The paper acknowledges the importance of a strong, dependable patent system and lauds the Bayh-Dole Act as the cornerstone of the U.S. technology transfer system, which leads the world in turning federally-funded inventions into new products, companies, jobs and even entirely new industries. Review of the 122-page paper confirms its overall value but also reveals some concerns.

Nokia Inks Patent Licensing Agreement With OPPO, A Rising Star in China’s Smartphone Industry

Nokia Corporation announced it entered into a patent licensing agreement with Chinese mobile consumer electronics firm OPPO. Although terms of the deal weren’t disclosed by Nokia, the company did state that under the agreement, OPPO would make payments over a multi-year period… OPPO may not receive the same kind of attention that its domestic rivals Xiaomi and Huawei receive, but it has become a major competitor in the Chinese smartphone market in recent years. OPPO had the greatest market share of smartphone makers in terms of Chinese sales during 2016 when the company shipped 78.4 million units to achieve a 16.8 percent market share within the country.

Enabling Technologies and the Underinvestment Problem

Certain innovations—known as enabling technologies—provide the foundation for progress across a range of industries. Enabling technologies include mobile wireless, the laser, CT scanners, the microprocessor, artificial intelligence, and freight containerization. Such technologies drive wealth creation throughout the economy. However, the difficulties associated with monetizing this type of IP, which I explore in this article, mean that private enterprise tends to underinvest in new enabling technologies. Public policy needs to be more supportive, and firms need to be willing to support more blue-sky projects. As a nation, we are harvesting the fruits of old enabling technologies without investing sufficiently in new ones. We are eating our seed corn.

Want a greater ROI for taxpayers? Restore the patent system, protect Bayh-Dole and cut the red tape strangling federal labs

Three events boosted our economic turnaround in the 1980’s: the passage of Bayh-Dole, which injected the incentives of patent ownership into the federal R&D system; the enactment of the Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit, which insured the courts would apply the patent law consistently; and the Supreme Court’s ruling in Diamond v Chakraberty that living organisms could be patented. That decision stated that patents could “include anything under the sun that is made by man.” Today that quote is only ironic.

Bernie Sanders’ Really Bad Idea

Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) introduced legislation requiring every agency and non-profit entity to include a “reasonable pricing” provision based on King’s formula for any life science invention made with government support. Apparently the colossal failure of a similar requirement forced on the National Institutes of Health (NIH) in the 1990’s which led to the collapse of industry partnerships without any reduction in drug prices is either unknown, or made no impression on Sen. Sanders. Or perhaps like his trust in socialism, he thinks that what failed in the past will somehow work by some weird magic if trotted out again.

Early Stage Innovation’s Chance to Save Itself

Universities in particular must explain to their congressional delegations why R&D must continue to be funded and why its Bayh-Dole based commercialization bridge must be protected so federal funds already in the pipeline can produce the future jobs, growth and beneficial scientific progress they expected when they voted formerly to support R&D… Unless universities actively justify their commercialization of federally-funded R&D, other influential interests on the Hill who care little about future scientific study, but care a lot about their own survival, will now perceive R&D’s annual funding as a bridge to their own survival. This is no time to wait and watch from the sidelines.

Intel R&D increases lead to 36% jump in U.S. patent grants

The recent earnings release from Intel also indicates that the company is increasing its investment in research and development. Intel reported that R&D expenditures were $12.7 billion over the course of 2016 and $3.3 billion during the fourth quarter. This was up from the company’s $12.1 billion investment in R&D during 2015 as well as $3.1 billion invested during 2015’s fourth quarter. Intel spent more on R&D than it did on marketing, general and administrative (MG&A), where the company spent $8.4 billion during 2016 and $2.2 billion during the recent quarter. Intel’s full year guidance for 2017 indicates that the company expects to spend a total of $20.5 billion on both R&D and MG&A this year.

IBM achieves record number of U.S. patents in 2016, 24th straight year of patent dominance

In 1992, Bill Clinton was elected President of the United States. Hurricane Andrew bore down on the American Southeast, causing billions in damage after wreaking destruction from Florida to Louisiana. Johnny Carson retired from The Tonight Show. The Buffalo Bills were in the Super Bowl. Los Angeles saw a string of deadly riots related to the LAPD’s televised beating of Rodney King. And 1992 was the last year during which a company other than American information technology firm IBM (NYSE:IBM) could claim that it had earned the greatest number of U.S. patents… With over 8,000 patents IBM stands supreme in the US patent world, earning the most US patents in 2016 and claiming the top spot for the 24th year in a row.

Advice for the Trump Administration and New Congress: Protect Bayh-Dole and Restore the Patent System

Bayh-Dole is running on autopilot without Executive branch oversight and U.S. patents are no longer the world’s gold standard. Without a course correction, we could be headed back to the bad old days… Bayh-Dole has become a driver of the U.S. economy. Every day of the year universities form two new companies and two new products from their inventions are commercialized. University spin out companies tend to stay in state becoming significant contributors to the regional economy… Bayh-Dole is a recognized best practice. The Chinese have adopted it while strengthening their patent system to better compete with us.

Case Study: How to reward and remunerate inventors in China?

Whether to compensate inventors and how to compensate inventors for their innovative work have been important topics in some countries such as Germany, Japan and China. The purpose of compensating inventors is to motivate researchers and promote innovation. Yet this has been both complicated and difficult in practice. For instance, in China, the Chinese Patent Law and its Implementation Rule are the basis for inventor remuneration, and different authorities have also actively issued their own regulations. However, among the different laws, rules and regulations (hereinafter “Rules”), there exists quite some inconsistency, such as in the amount of the inventor remuneration. Under such circumstance, industries are curious how the Rules will be applied and interpreted by the courts in case of any disputes.

In Considering Patent Law Changes, Don’t Forget Impact on Universities

While there has been much written in the past months on efforts to change the U.S. patent system, there has been little focus on the vital role that the current patent system plays in supporting universities in conducting basic research and development (R&D). This university-driven R&D is a critical force in driving innovation, inventions and often startups that create jobs and promote American competitiveness.

Git’er Done! Take the Brake Off Federal Tech Transfer

Any government truly interested in commercializing its research must realize that time is of the essence, risk is inherent in the process and deal makers should be supported by process. Napoleon adopted the motto: “Not a moment must be lost.” But quoting Napoleon may be too intimidating for times like these, so how about Larry the Cable Guy? Perhaps we still retain enough of the American spirit to embrace: “Git ‘er done!” Time will tell (perhaps sooner than we imagine). We’ve been trying to drive the federal R&D system with the parking brake on. It’s time to put product people behind the wheel, buckle the process people safely in, release the brake, hit the gas and get rolling. Those that used to be far behind are coming up fast in our rear view mirror.

Reforming the Federal R&D System

There’s nothing in the world like the U.S. public research system which is on the cutting edge of every field of science. However, to fully benefit from this investment discoveries must move from the laboratory into the marketplace. This can only happen when partnerships with U.S. industry are be made on terms conducive to commercialization. Additionally, in a time of tight budgets federal research must be efficiently managed even if that means crossing traditional agency borders to leverage resources and increase impact. Someone must be charged with insuring that the system is running as Congress, the President, and most importantly, the American people intend.

NASA Selects Early Stage Innovation Proposals From 10 Universities

NASA has selected 10 university-led proposals for study of innovative, early-stage space technologies designed to improve shielding from space radiation, spacecraft thermal management and optical systems. The 1-year grants are worth approximately $250,000 each, with an additional year of research possible. Each of these technology areas requires dramatic improvements over existing capabilities for future science and human exploration missions. Early stage, or low technology readiness level concepts, could mature into tools that solve the difficult challenges facing future NASA missions.