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Technology Transfer. Professor Philip Griffith School of Public Affairs USTC Hefei. TOPICS IN PRESENTATION. General description of “technology transfer” Use of patent documents for knowledge transfer European Union concern about China TOT Australian Government Policy.

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technology transfer

Technology Transfer

Professor Philip Griffith

School of Public Affairs



topics in presentation
  • General description of “technology transfer”
  • Use of patent documents for knowledge transfer
  • European Union concern about China TOT
  • Australian Government Policy
what is technology transfer
What is “Technology Transfer”?
  • WIPO says technology transfer (TOT) is:
  • “defined as transfer of new technologies from universities and research institutions to parties capable of commercialization”
  • or in the sense of transfer of technologies across international borders, generally from developed to developing countries.
  • Generally TOT consists of knowledge or IP rights that are:

 licensed in the form of intellectual property,

 the subject of formal consulting or training agreements,

 communicated in the work place or research settings

 diffused by publication or other means.

what is technology transfer4
What is “Technology Transfer”?
  • The WIPO website then refers to two manuals on licensing
  • Successful Technology Licensing
  • "Exchanging Value - Negotiating Technology Licensing Agreements: A Training Manual”
what is technology transfer5
What is “Technology Transfer”?
  • Wikipedia says
  • Technology transfer is the process of sharing of
    • skills, knowledge, technologies, methods of manufacturing, samples of manufacturing and facilities
  • among governments and other institutions
  • to ensure that scientific and technological developments are accessible to a wider range of users
  • who can then further develop and exploit the technology into
    • new products, processes, applications, materials or services.
  • It is closely related to (and may arguably be considered a subset of) knowledge transfer.
what is technology transfer6
What is “Technology Transfer”?
  • The reference to
    • skills, knowledge, technologies, methods of manufacturing, samples of manufacturing and facilities

is probably wide enough to refer to the subject of transfer

  • But there are more locations of transfer.Transfer can be
    • between Public Universities or Government Research Institutes and private industry
    • between the research and development (R&D) departments and the other departments of a single business
    • between various entities or branches of a business group
    • in a franchising operation from the franchisor to the franchisee
    • between international organisations and national organisations
    • between industrialised economies and developing economies
    • And so on
what is technology transfer7
What is “Technology Transfer”?
  • And while the WIPO emphasises licensing as the major vehicle for technology transfer there are other methods of transmission
    • Government local participation requirements in foreign firms setting up in the jurisdiction
      • Note Chinese requirements and EU response
    • Legitimate reverse engineering
    • Access to publicly available knowledge through patent data bases
    • Industrial espionage
    • Straight out infringement activity
Utilization of Patent Information as an Technology Transfer Tool: Databases, Content and Access Conditions
patent system
Patent System
  • Patent system has always been concerned with “technology transfer”
  • A patent specification is a teaching document:
  • Should explain to a person skilled in a field of technology exactly
    • what has been invented and
    • how to put it into practice
volume of patent documents
Volume of Patent Documents
  • There is an enormous number of patent documents
  • WIPO statistics for 2004
    • 850,000 first filings
    • 1,600,000 applications to patent offices
    • 5,000,000 patents in force
  • European Patent Office
    • holds 60,000,000 patent documents
  • Range of patent documentation
  • Types of information in patent documents
  • Way information is presented
  • How information may be accessed
  • Some uses of information
patent documentation
  • Specifications in granted patents
  • Specifications in applications not granted
  • Specifications in petty patents, innovation patents, utility models
  • Provisional application descriptions
  • Decided cases in patent litigation
  • Abstracts of inventions used to search
  • Official gazettes, bulletins of patent offices
  • References between sources
  • Official patent indexes
patent documentation14
Patent Documentation
  • Data bases for computer searching
    • Data bases of national or regional offices
    • Specialist patent information providers
    • Patent agent firms
    • Individual enterprises
  • Government reports, discussion papers, draft legislation,etc
  • Compilations of patent statistics
types of information
  • Technological


  • Bibliographical information
technological information
  • Description of the state of the art prior to the invention
  • Detailed description of the invention in a form to instruct a person skilled in the art
  • Drawings or formulae
  • A claim or claims defining embodiments
bibliographical information
  • Dates names and addresses of:
    • the inventor,
    • applicant for right,
    • person claiming to be eligible for grant,
    • patent representative, agent or attorney
  • Classification symbols
    • IPC symbols
    • Maybe national patent classification
  • Title of invention
  • Abstract of description
  • Representative drawing or formulae
advantages of patent documents
  • Current and recently granted patents and applications often contain most recent technological information publicly available in field.
  • Often only source of information
  • Detailed explanations of technology
  • Detailed information in all fields
  • Source of linking references
  • Standard form of patents
  • Bibliographical items standardised by INID code
advantages of patent documents19
  • Classifications systems allow key to searching and analysis
  • Abstracts assist sifting for relevance
  • Bibliographical information allows contact with wide range of parties
  • Standard formats allow creation of consistent data bases
  • Patent family identifiable both by technology and territorially
international patent classification
  • National patent classifications developed
    • USPTO 1831, German patent Office 1877, UK 1880
  • Once prior art included foreign patent documents was need for international system
  • WIPO and Strasbourg Agreement 1971
  • IPC system (8th edition)
    • 8 main sections of technology
    • 21 subsections
    • 129 classes
    • 639 subclasses
    • 7,314 main groups
    • 61,397 groups (and rising)
  • All identified by key symbols
  • International Patent Documentation Centre- 1972
    • Established by WIPO and Austrian Govt
    • Now administered by EPO
  • Contains
    • Title, IPC classification symbols, any national classification symbol, relevant dates,eg filing, amendment, search, registration, names of inventor. Applicant, patentee, addresses. Contact information etc.
  • Machine readable, computer storage, fully searchable
  • Information collected from national and regional patent offices
  • Particularly useful in capacity to generate “patent families”
inpadoc forms of access
INPADOC forms of access
  • Patent Classification Service (PCS)
  • Numerical database (NDB)
  • Patent Family and Numerical List (PFS/INL)
  • Patent Application Service (PAS)
  • Patent Applicant Priorities (PAP)
  • Patent Inventor Service (PIS)
  • Patent Register Service (PRS)
  • Patent Gazette (IPG)
  • Watch
  • CAPRI project
  • WIPO services for developing countries
  • User guides in particular fields
other classifications
  • ECLA- European Classification
    • 134,000 sub divisions
    • EPO claims more precise, homogeneous and systematic than IPC
    • Concordance with IPC
  • USPC- United States Patent Classification
    • 400 classes, with class number
    • many subclasses all with detailed identifying symbols
    • Table of concordance with IPC
other sources of information
  • Derwents World Patent Index (WPI)
  • Chemical Abstracts Service (CAS)
  • Private sources
    • eg Siemens,
    • Hitachi, etc
  • Patent Office data bases (free)
  • International Organisations (eg WIPO Patentscope) (free)
  • Commercial companies (fees)
  • Note there are database providers and patent information and analysis service providers
the uses of information
The uses of information.
  • Testing novelty or inventive step
  • Information about the state of technology and method
  • Planning information
  • Management information
the users of information
The users of information.
  • Patent offices
  • Governments and government departments and agencies
  • Researchers and teachers in higher education
  • Research and development institutions
  • Industrial enterprises
use as technical information
Use as technical information.
  • Determine most recent products and methods
  • Accumulate and understand technological advance
  • Locate related technology
  • Identify technology trends
  • Adapt research priorities
  • R&D plans strategically targeted
  • Allows “design around” or complementary development strategies
  • Reduce incidence of “reinventing the wheel”
  • Suggest solutions to analogous problems in other fields
  • Indicator of feasibility
use as management tool government
Use as management tool - Government
  • Monitor foreign patent applications in own country
      • to level of foreign ownership and control in economy
      • Indicate trend of technology in foreign country
      • Can assist identifying import levels
  • Monitor domestic applications to identify
      • Level of domestic innovation
      • levels of R&D success
  • Information to assess trends in economy
  • Identification of activity in differing sectors
  • Planning tool
  • Monitoring and analysing patents in a foreign country may reveal much about that countries economic and industrial development and assist trade policies
use as management tool enterprises
Use as management tool - Enterprises
  • Source of technological information for R&D
  • Compile and maintain IP inventory
  • Key performance targets and measures for
      • Overall enterprise activity
      • Particular divisions or departments
      • Research teams or individual researchers
  • Searching by inventor allows to monitor who is generator of new technology
  • Screen and monitor competitors
  • Use information to oppose competitors acquiring rights, seek revocation, defend infringement actions
  • Identify potential collaborators for cross licensing, patent pooling
use as management tool enterprises30
Use as management tool - Enterprises
  • Use information to decide if should buy out competitor, merge or sell out to competitor
  • Identify possible ways to designs around others rights
  • Identify possible improvement patents on others patents
  • And so on
europe and china technology transfer
Europe andChina Technology Transfer
  • Warns that EU companies subject to Chinese requirements that threaten unwanted Technology Transfer
    • Compulsory joint ventures for markey access
    • Public Contracts and procurement
    • Design Institutes
    • Certification for Access
compulsory joint ventures in exchange for market access
Compulsory joint ventures in exchange for market access
  • Access to the Chinese market in some designated sectors,  sectors,  such  as 
    • car  manufacturing   
    • manufacture of  railway  locomotives  and  rolling  stock, 
  • foreign companies  must  enter  into  joint  ventures  with  Chinese companies. 
  • Approval  to  form  a  joint  venture  or  to operate  may  depend  on  the  supply  of  specific technology,  including  future  improvements  of  this technology. 
  • In  some  cases,  the  partner  cannot  be  freely chosen  and  may  be  a  competitor  or  concurrent  Joint Venture partner of another competitor.
  • In  other  cases,  enlargement  of  a  pre-existing  investment  may  require the set up of local R&D Centre or other forms of transfer of Knowhow. 
public contracts procurement
Public contracts/procurement
  • To take part in public tenders,foreign companies must ensure that part of their production is local 
    • up  to  80%in some cases 
  • Production  by  foreign  subsidiaries  in  China  is  often  not  considered  as  local
  • Instead,  foreign  firms  have  to  work  with  a  Chinese  general  contractor,  to  which  their  technology  has  to  be  transferred in full. 
  •  Specific rules about bidding requirements of technology transfer,   to  give  the  contract  to  whichever  company  promises  the  greatest  transfer of know how
design institutes
Design institutes
  • For  many  projects,  in  particular  the  manufacture  of  machinery  and  equipment, China requires mandatory wideranging  review  of  industrial  drawings  and  designs  by  Chinese  design  institutes . 
  • The  drawings  and  know‐how  may  later  be  used  by  other  Chinese  projects  to  duplicate  and  use  the  design  in  other  locations  of  China.  In  addition  to  transferring , 
  • Foreign companies often have  provide detailed  technical documentation and to  train  Chinese  staff  so  that,  in  future,  they  can  design the machinery or equipment independently
certification and licenses for market access
Certification and licenses for market access
  • Many  products  have  to  be  certified  by  a  Chinese  certification  institution  or  are  subject  to  a  license  by  a  Chinese  ministry  before  they  are  allowed  on  the  Chinese  market. 
  • Some  certification  procedures  require  inspections  of  production  plants  in  right  holders'  home  countries. 
  • In  some  cases,  the  Chinese  inspectors  may  come  from  competitor  companies  and  they  may  ask  technical  questions  which  are  not  strictly  necessary  for  certification. 
business advice
Business advice
  • The European SME IPR HELPDESK provides detailed advice and strategies for businesses seeking to work in China or with Chinese partners how to minimize the risks of unwanted technology transfer and deal with the four major risks.
australian government innovation strategy
Australian Government Innovation Strategy


An Innovation Agenda for the 21st Century

released on 21 May 2009

• Strategy from 2009 to 2020

a 10 year reform agenda

From the office of Senator Kim Carr

Minister for Innovation, Industry, Science and Research

australian innovation performance
Australian Innovation Performance

Declined between 1997 and 2007

(Howard Years … political motivation for assertion?)

From 5th to 18th on World Economic Forum Global Competitiveness Index

multifactor productivity grew on average1.4% annually between 1982 - 1996

But between 1997 - 2007 only 0.9%

Commonwealth spending on science & innovation fell 22% as share of GDP to 0.58 % GDP in 2007

Business spending on R&D collapsed in 1990’s and despite recovery still lags competitors

Firms introducing innovation static at 1 in 3


China’s R & D spending grown 22% annually since 1996

Australia’s R & D spending grown by 8% annually

Israel spends 4 % of GDP on R & D

Finland, Japan, South Korea, Sweden spend 3% GDP

Austria, Denmark, Germany, Iceland, Switzerland, Taiwan, USA spend 2.5% GDP

Australia spends 2% GDP

Russia and South Africa doubled R & D spending in 10 years

Share of R & D in non OECD countries increased from 11.7 to 18.4%

New entrants making rapid improvements, older players investing to maintain position

australian national innovation priorities
Australian National Innovation Priorities

Public research funding to support high quality research into areas of challenge.

Develop strong base of skilled researchers.

Fostering industries of the future to secure commercialisation.

More effective dissemination of new technologies.

Encouraging a culture of collaboration within research community and between researchers and industry.

International collaboration.

Public and community participation.

research capacity
Research capacity

International experience - 75% private sector patents draw on public sector research.

Universities and public research organisations like CSIRO crucial


Need to renew public funded research workforce, research infrastructure and method of sharing results

government action on public research capacity
Government action on public research capacity

Progressively increase number of research groups at world class level

Use “mission-based funding compacts” to promote collaboration

Universities encouraged by funding models to form research “hub and spokes”

Universities encouraged by funding models to pursue “industry driven” research

Address gap in funding indirect research costs - new funding program

Increase capacity to participate in domestic and international collaborations

Increase capacity to participate in multidisciplinary research

Invest in research infrastructure - various funding mechanisms listed in Strategic Roadmap for Australian Research Infrastructure:

- $580 m for university research and infrastructure,

- $901 m for projects identified in roadmap and Super Science Initiative

- Education Investment Fund 2009 - 10

government action on public research skills
Government action on public research skills

Workforce strategy to address expected shortfalls in supply of researchers

Double number of Australian Post Graduate Awards (APAs)

Increase dollar amount of APA (10% increase 2009 - 10)

Increase students in higher education generally and mathematics and science particularly to enlarge pool of potential Higher Degree by Research students

Create viable career paths for researchers

Early Career Researcher grants

Mid Career Research grants (Future Fellowships)

Senior researcher grants (Australian Laureate Fellowships)

business innovation
Business Innovation

Business drawn to innovation by competitive advantage and profit motive.

Australia had few large business with fund capacity - so challenge is medium and small business innovation funding.

government role business innovation
Government role Business Innovation

Aim to increase proportion of businesses engaging in innovation by 25% over 10 years.

Enterprise Connect

Clean Business Australia

Clean Energy Initiative

Increase businesses investing in R & D

R & D tax credit system

Support innovative responses to climate change

Clean Business Australia

Green Car Innovation Fund

Clean Energy Initiative

Global Carbon capture and Storage Institute

Climate Change Action Fund

government role business innovation48
Government role Business Innovation

Improve innovation skills in workplace

Enterprise Connect

Education Revolution strategy

Support firms get ideas to market

Climate Ready

Green Car Innovation Fund

Commonwealth Commercialisation Institute

Work with Private sector to increase supply of venture capital

Government initiatives to respond too credit crisis “the stimulus”

Innovation Investment Follow-on Fund

Maintain dialogue with Industry about innovation

Enterprise Connect

Industry Innovation Councils

Pharmaceutical working group model

public sector innovation
Public Sector Innovation

Government must lead by example

Take advice from Australian Public Service Management Advisory Committee

Australian National Audit Office

Use public procurement to drive research, innovation technology development

Commonwealth Government Procurement Guidelines 2008

Coordinate approach to information management

Australian Government Information Office

Consider options for reform of Patent system and support intellectual property education for researchers and business

Improve management and regulation of biotechnology and nanotechnology

A new national Enabling Technologies Strategy


• Australia ranks last in OECD on the level of collaboration between public researchers and private industry. To improve Government will:

• Seek to double level of collaboration between Universities, public sector research institutions and business :

Mission based funding compacts

Enterprise Connect

Researchers in Business Program

Industry Innovation Councils

Joint Research Engagement Scheme

Royal Institution of Australia

• Increase international collaboration

Australian Research Council grants open to international applicants

Specific multilateral projects eg Square Kilometre Array radio telescope project


Renew Cooperative Research Centres (CRC)

Collaborating to a Purpose -

new guidelines 2008 introduce

“public good” as a funding criterion

encourage research in humanities, arts , social sciences,

Increase focus on needs of end users

Improve Enterprise Connect services to individual firms

Seek to develop regional clusters and networks linking researchers, educational institutions and business

Promote proven models for linking public funded and not for profit researchers with industry

Eg CSIRO’s national Research Flagship