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Before an academic entrepreneur may protect or commercialize an invention, they must understand if they own the rights to it. This short chapter helps the inventor to consider the various scenarios that occur in a university setting. It advises the inventor how to seek a waiver from the university if they believe they are the true owner of the invention. If the facts indicate that the invention should be owned by the university, the chapter also discusses how a university decides to formally protect the invention through patent or copyright. Finally, the chapter advises the inventor how to stay involved in the patenting process, even if the university is the official owner of the rights, in order to build strong protection over the invention against any later infringement.


Technology transfer, academic ownership, academic entrepreneur, university entrepreneur, inventorship rights, patent license, ownership rights, innovation, university setting, protecting intellectual property, IP basics, ascertaining ownership, university employment, TTO, patents, inventor’s role

Publication Citation

Intellectual Property: Ownership and Protection in a University Setting, in Academic Entrepreneurship for Medical and Health Scientists (Nalaka Gooneratne, Rachel McGarrigle & Flaura Winston eds., 2019).