Vanderbilt's Commercialization Process

Below is an interactive map of Vanderbilt's commercialization process that explains the steps we take to commercialize intellectual property developed at Vanderbilt. Download a copy of  Vanderbilt University's Commercialization Process here.


<h2>Research</h2><br>Most of what is developed during a research project is academic knowledge that is disseminated through peer reviewed journals.  However, new inventions, discoveries, materials, and the like can also have commercialization potential.  We help identify opportunities and how they can best be protected and commercialized. <h2>Disclosure</h2><br>Submitting a completed invention disclosure form launches the CTTC review process.  This document allows CTTC to record the invention, identify publication deadlines, evaluate the technology based on information disclosed, and fulfill obligations to government, foundation, and industry funding sponsors. <h2>Evaluation</h2><br>A CTTC licensing officerwill review the disclosure and its scientific details with the inventor in order to achieve a deep understanding of the innovation.   The officer will then perform an assessment of market potential, patentability, capabilities for future development, and other salient issues affecting commercialization efforts. <h2>Marketing</h2><br>The licensing officer will identify and approach companies operating in relevant markets in order to spark interest in licensing the invention. During this stage, details of the invention may be shared with companies under confidentiality agreements, and scientific discussions may be arranged with the inventors –often a key factor in generating market interest. <h2>Protection</h2><br>Depending on the type of invention, protection may include patents, copyrights, or other forms of intellectual property protection.  CTTC works with inventors to determine the best form of protection for each technology.  Patenting is an element of the commercialization process,  not a goal in and of itself. <h2>Licensing</h2><br>Licensing is the means by which CTTC transfers intellectual property from Vanderbilt to a company for commercial development.  Each license is unique and includes a grant of rights to the company in return for financial and other consideration.  We seek inventor input regarding terms and obligations being written into the contract, and keep them abreast of changes as the negotiation process takes place. <h2>Monitoring</h2><br>Licenses are monitored to ensure that licensees are meeting their contractual obligations to develop and market the licensed technologies. In addition, this process affirms payment and reporting obligations are being met in a timely manner. License audits are carried out at this stage as well.  A rigorous compliance function often separates exemplary programs from the norm. <h2>New Venture</h2><br>CTTC and Vanderbilt are highly supportive of inventor interests in creating a new venture to commercialize their technology.  We seek to help investigators evaluate the start-up potential of their technologies against more standard licensing approaches, and for the right projects, connect them to capital, managers, advisors, and other service providers. <h2>Further Development Needed</h2><br>Results of an evaluation may indicate that a technology needs further development, prototyping, or proof of concept before it is ready for commercialization.  In such cases, the invention will be put on hold until further data can be generated and the details of the invention can be expanded.  CTTC will assist in identifying funds for further development. <h2>Close</h2><br>Inventions lacking sufficient market potential to justify the cost of protection, or for which the potential patent scope is deemed to be too narrow for commercialization, are not likely to be commercialized.  If an invention is not pursued, it is offered back to the inventors to pursue at their own expense if they so choose.

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