Office of Technology, Innovation, and Industry Relations supports UC Merced faculty, staff and students with innovation, entrepreneurship and partnering. OTIIR assists in making connections with industry, understanding, and realizing the commercial potential of ideas, and facilitating the transition of discoveries from the lab into marketplace.
Intellectual Property & Licensing
Before Publishing: Disclose
Don’t lose your intellectual property rights! The Office of Technology, Innovation, and Industry Relations (OTIIR) can assist UC Merced inventors with the process of protecting their innovations before publishing. All inventions made by UC employees must be disclosed to the university prior to publication, regardless of when or where they are invented by completing and submitting the below Invention Disclosure Form. This is a legal obligation of university employment and is the first step in the patent protection process. If you would like to discuss the innovation’s commercial potential before completing the form, please contact our office.
Patent Review after Disclosing
Once received by our office, an IP Officer will be assigned to the case and review the received disclosure form. A review will be performed and any pre-existing legal obligations to third parties will be identified. Additionally, the innovation’s potential to attract commercial interests is reviewed and the lead inventor may be contacted to discuss potential commercialization opportunities. If potential commercialization is identified, the IP Officer will seek appropriate protection and a licensing strategy.
Copyrights play an important role in intellectual property protection. So much so that it was enshrined in the Constitution:
The Congress shall have the power . . . To promote the Progress of Science and useful Arts, by securing for limited Times to Authors and Inventors the exclusive Right to their respective Writings and Discoveries.
Copyrights incentivize creators ("Authors and Inventors") by allowing them to profit from their work. However, is also to "promote the Progress of Science and useful Arts" by allowing subsequent creators to make use of previous work. See UC Merced Library for more information and resources: https://libguides.ucmerced.edu/copyright
Before disclosing confidential information about your innovation, it is important to have a confidentiality agreement or non-disclosure agreement in place to protect your intellectual property. If you would like to share proprietary, sensitive or “not-ready-for-publication” information with others, OTIIR will work with you to put in place a non-disclosure agreement or confidential disclosure agreement.
For assistance, contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org