Case Studies of North American University Performance in Technology Transfer and Commercialization

Case Studies of North American University Performance in Technology Transfer and Commercialization

Alan Collier (University of Otago, New Zealand) and Fang Zhao (American University of Sharjah, UAE)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-61520-609-4.ch001
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Abstract

This chapter reports on case studies of four North American universities engaged in technology transfer and commercialization. The literature and case studies permitted an understanding of the characteristics possessed by universities and university technology transfer offices that appear to be successful in technology transfer and commercialization. Fourteen characteristics, or institutional enablers, are identified and analyzed in order to determine which among these characteristics have greater influence in the success of technology transfer offices. The chapter concludes that universities with superior-performing technology transfer offices possess two factors in common. First, the university President and other executives concerned in commercialization have to believe in it and make a genuine commitment to its success. Second, the technology transfer office has to be led by an individual who possesses several attributes: the ability and willingness to work within the university structure; the ability to be both an entrepreneur and a manager; the ability to see what is happening in technology transfer and commercialization as it evolves and matures; and to be a leader of people and business.

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