Inventions and their Commercial Exploitation in Academic Institutions: Analysing Determinants Among Academics

Institutions of higher education are considered as an important source of innovation. Consequently, big efforts are made to facilitate technology transfer from academia into the market. However, technology transfer at German universities does not seem to live up to its full potential. We find for example that while 18,5% of our sample did in fact generate at least one invention, only 4,5% of the sample are engaged in commercialization activities.Therefore the vast majority of generated inventions remains unexploited. . Based on this finding, we analyze how individual, career-related, and institutional factors affect the innovation and knowledge transfer activities of male and female academics. We show that Gender differences as well as career and human capital related factors (e.g. scope of employment, professional experience, and leadership position) affect such innovation transfer activities. While women generate less inventions than men, the fulltime employed researchers with a professional experience outside of academia and a leadership position lead to more inventions as well as partly higher exploitation activities.

Bijedić, T.; Chlosta, S.; Werner, A. (2016): Inventions and their Commercial Exploitation in Academic Institutions: Analysing Determinants Among Academics, in: IfM Bonn: Working Paper 04/16, Bonn.

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