200 episodes

AUTM on the AIR is the weekly podcast that brings you conversations about the impact of research commercialization and the people who make it happen. Join us for interviews with patent and licensing professionals, innovators, entrepreneurs, and tech transfer leaders on the issues and trends that matter most.

AUTM on the Air AUTM

    • Technology
    • 5.0 • 9 Ratings

AUTM on the AIR is the weekly podcast that brings you conversations about the impact of research commercialization and the people who make it happen. Join us for interviews with patent and licensing professionals, innovators, entrepreneurs, and tech transfer leaders on the issues and trends that matter most.

    Innovate, Navigate, Communicate: Dr. Sheila Kadura on Transforming Policy into Tech Transfer Triumphs

    Innovate, Navigate, Communicate: Dr. Sheila Kadura on Transforming Policy into Tech Transfer Triumphs

    The influence of Washington D.C. corridor issues on tech transfer (technology transfer) operations significantly affects tech transfer professionals in several key ways. From navigating the regulatory environments of compliance and IP to funding, to ethical considerations, there’s a lot to unpack when it comes to translating policy into practice. I’m excited to talk with Dr. Sheila Kadura as she shares her wealth of knowledge and experience on tech transfer and regulatory policy. 
    Dr. Sheila Kadura serves as Associate General Counsel at the University of Texas System, where she is responsible for a broad range of intellectual property matters. Her areas of expertise include patents, copyrights, trademarks, trade secrets, sponsored research, clinical trials, and the commercialization and licensing of technology.
    Active both locally and nationally in the intellectual property community, Dr. Kadura contributes significantly to its development and networking. She holds a position on the Executive Board as the Mentorship Chair for the Honorable Lee Yeakel Intellectual Property Inn of Court. Additionally, she serves as the Sponsorship & Finance Advisor for the Texas Chapter of ChIPs, a nonprofit organization dedicated to advancing and connecting women in technology, law, and policy.

    In This Episode:
    [02:11] Effective strategies for navigating favorable policy changes to support tech transfer. It's important to have open lines of communication with all of the different involved institutions.
    [03:18] With open lines of communication, Dr. Kadura can ask about individual pain points and share information about policy changes.
    [04:35] Underestimated challenges include explaining the process to people. Tech transfer is a positive thing for everyone involved, but the nuances can be complex.
    [06:10] Universities and the government do not have the resources to take intellectual property and turn it into a product. This is why patents and partnerships are so important. Research is different from testing, perfecting, and manufacturing a product.
    [07:30] It's important to communicate with the licensee about how regulation will impact them with the development of a product.
    [09:00]  Emerging technologies and how to best protect intellectual property. Is this something we can patent? Or protected by copyright? This will influence how it's licensed.
    [11:00] Bridging the gap between legal intricacies and scientific innovation includes explaining why the law matters and how to protect the property.
    [12:27] Dr. Kadura talks about mentoring and still practicing the law. She also likes to point out ways that innovation that's coming out of the system is helping the world.
    [15:28] We learn about strategies that help foster a culture of innovation within universities and research institutions. Most of this happens at the university level. Success stories help illustrate the effect of innovation. Training and engaging more faculty is also used.
    [17:05] There are a lot of questions about the changes in march-in rights. The negative effect on tech transfer could be that licensees are less willing to work with us. 
    [19:16] There will also continue to be a lot of activity around AI. The US patent office recently issued its guidance on ai-enabled inventions. There will also be a lot of regulation around data use.
    [19:51] The most pressing priorities for tech transfer professionals include protecting and growing the tech transfer ecosystem for those of us who believe that tech transfer is good. This includes having the ability to identify the things that result in less tech transfer and less licensing.
    [21:10] Keep your government regulation people informed and relate it back to the whole goal of higher education.

    Resources: 
    Sheila Kadura Associate General Counsel The University of Texas System
    Sheila Kadura LinkedIn

    • 22 min
    EDI Guide: Nine Points to Consider for Fostering Greater Inclusion in Innovation

    EDI Guide: Nine Points to Consider for Fostering Greater Inclusion in Innovation

    One of our goals at AUTM is to foster greater inclusion in innovation. We are committed to providing guidance to our members and the wider technology transfer community on important global issues. This episode is about one of the newest EDI guides, the Nine Points to Consider for Fostering Greater Inclusion in Innovation. I’m excited to discuss these new guidelines with Almesha Campbell, Jennifer Gottwald, and Jane Muir.
    Almesha Campbell and Jennifer Gottwald are members of the AUTM Women Inventors’ Special Interest Group (WISIG). They also contributed to the creation of this report. 
    Almesha L. Campbell, Ph.D., is the Assistant Vice President for Research and Economic Development at Jackson State University (JSU) and the Immediate Past Board Chair of AUTM. She is acknowledged for her dedication to innovation and research translation. She advocates for incorporating innovation and entrepreneurship into the faculty's tenure and promotion criteria.
    Jennifer Gottwald is a Director of Licensing at the Wisconsin Alumni Research Foundation (WARF), where she has worked for over fifteen years. WARF manages the patenting and licensing for the University of Wisconsin – Madison (UW), the WiCell Research Institute, and the Morgridge Institute for Research. She is a founder and active member of the AUTM Women Inventors’ Special Interest Group (WISIG).
    Jane Muir is recognized as a "Thought Leader" in innovation, with a remarkable 25-year career at the University of Florida specializing in technology commercialization and new venture creation. In 2017, she established Muir & Associates Consulting, providing strategic guidance to companies across the innovation lifecycle. 
    Jane's expertise has made her a sought-after advisor, empowering businesses to achieve tangible results. Notably, she has served as the board chair of AUTM and was a founding member of the AUTM Women Inventors’ Special Interest Group (WISIG).

    In This Episode:
    [03:45] Jane explains how this document came about. It was inspired by a calendar of inventors that turned out to be all men. 
    [05:13] When they decided to feature all women in the calendar, they had to lower the criteria because there weren't enough women inventors.
    [05:40]  After many iterations, the AUTM board wanted to share this with leadership.
    [06:54] How tech transfer offices can use this roadmap. It begins with engaging with women in tech transfer. We can have conversations about each point on campus. 
    [08:38] Go through each point until you've made an impact in each area.
    [09:14] Point 1 is about the lack of diversity and inclusion in all stages of the innovation life cycle. The first point is to acknowledge the lack of diversity in the innovation cycle.
    [11:40] Point 2 is that greater inclusion of women and minorities in all phases of the innovation life cycle will ensure a greater diversity of products that address unmet needs that people from all backgrounds can benefit from.
    [12:04] Look at the demographic background on campus and then have conversations about what the tech transfer office does.
    [15:48] Point 3 Examples of biases and strategies that tech transfer offices can use to address these.
    [16:54] We are always putting our own interpretation on what we hear.
    [20:09] Point 4 It's very important to incorporate trainers that come from diverse backgrounds.
    [21:37] Point 5 Encouraging participation of all faculty in innovation. Have recognition for the faculty that's innovating.
    [26:55] Point 6 Why should efforts be made to ensure that all inventors are given the same level of service before, during and after the invention.
    [28:32] Point 7 Equal consideration and support for all faculty. We need to be intentional about supporting everybody who could be an entrepreneur.
    [31:43] Point 8 Programs should be considered that address the unmet needs and unique challenges faced by women and minorities in the technology commercialization process.
    [32:00] We're not talking about giving any one

    • 42 min
    A Vision for Tomorrow: Yoichi Oshima on IP, Tech Transfer, and Innovation Analysis

    A Vision for Tomorrow: Yoichi Oshima on IP, Tech Transfer, and Innovation Analysis

    In the world of technology transfer, listening to diverse perspectives from across the globe isn't merely about understanding alternative methodologies; it's fundamentally about unlocking fresh ideas that can be integrated into our own organizations. 
    Today, I have the pleasure of speaking with Yoichi Oshima, the Vice President for Government and Industry Relations at Tokyo Tech.
    With a background in electronics engineering, Yoichi possesses extensive experience in both patent examination and semiconductor-related domains. His career has been marked by various significant roles, including professorships and directorships at esteemed institutions such as Tohoku University and the Japan Patent Office. 
    He is a pivotal figure in promoting collaboration between academia and industry through Tokyo Tech's Open Innovation Platform. As an authority in semiconductors, intellectual property, and innovation analysis, Yoichi has contributed to numerous publications, including "Intellectual Property Overview for Engineers."
    We discuss Yoichi's background and his insights on collaboration between academia and industry. We dive into the role of intellectual property in shaping the landscape of tech transfer, especially amidst today's rapid technological advancements. We also explore efforts to foster innovation within academic institutions and initiatives promoting diversity. We cover the current state of tech transfer and the impact of emerging technologies like AI and IoT. Yoichi also offers advice for tech transfer professionals.

    In This Episode:
    [02:07] How Yoichi transitioned from electronic engineering to his current field. After working in the electronic field, Yoichi became a patent examiner. He then moved on to innovation and where he is now. 
    [04:33] Yoichi talks about the evolution of semiconductors and diversity and innovation. Diversity and networking is very important for innovation.
    [06:04] He has extensive experience in patent examination. Yoichi was a patent examiner for 20 years.
    [06:23] The role of IP in tech transfer. A patent is an open way to do transfers. We need to make the patent system more efficient.
    [07:21] Recent industry needs aren't clear. There are challenges that companies face including social issues. To find solutions we need to do design thinking, ask the question, and prototype. 
    [09:06] Innovation thrives on diversity of thought and experience. Yoichi shares examples of promoting inclusion in the tech transfer space. Collaborating with other universities helps Tokyo Tech get the space needed for their experiments.
    [11:05] They've also tried to collaborate with women's universities who don't have adequate engineering departments. Working in a complimentary way has helped develop diversity between the universities.
    [12:44] As a senior aide to the President at Tokyo Tech, finding ways to help semiconductor engineers be more efficient intersects with his work in government and industry relations. It's similar to a mentorship position.
    [14:07] The current state of tech transfer and what Yoichi envisions for its future in light of emerging technologies. The more diversity the more chance to network in a global way. IoT and AI will help with cross communication more than ever before.
    [15:35] Tech transfer advice includes being proud of networking. It's essential for innovation. 
    [16:24] Key Insights from Intellectual Property Overview for Engineers. Yoichi wrote this book, because at the time there weren't quality IP resources for engineers. 
    [17:08] Engineers are interested in how to make a patent for their idea. This book is basic knowledge of how to develop your idea before patenting. Patents are how to make your idea/dream come true. 
    [18:39] Yoichi shares an upcoming project that he is excited about. There's going to be a metaverse technology showcase that anyone from around the world can participate in.

    Resources: 
    Tokyo Tech: Open Innovation Platform
    Yoichi Oshima

    • 21 min
    Equality in Academia: Investing in Women for Better Science With Janet, Ulrike, and Ursula

    Equality in Academia: Investing in Women for Better Science With Janet, Ulrike, and Ursula

    Academia plays a crucial role in societal progress, supported by significant public funds allocated to higher education and research institutions. However, this support is compromised by pervasive sexism within academia, leading to the loss of talented women and impeding scientific advancement.
    Today, we're addressing a critical issue afflicting academia: sexism and its detrimental effects on science and public funding. Our discussion is inspired by the paper "Sexism In Academia Is Bad For Science And A Waste Of Public Funding," authored by Nicole Boivin, Susanne Täuber, Ulrike Beisiegel, Ursula Keller, and Janet G. Hering.
    We're joined by Professor Janet Hering, Ulrike Beisiegel, and Ursula Keller to delve into the challenges and barriers women face in the academic world. Together, we'll examine the pervasive nature of sexism in academia and its consequences.
    With a distinguished career beginning at Caltech and UCLA before her move to Switzerland in 2007, Professor Hering is the Director Emerita of the Swiss Federal Institute of Aquatic Science & Technology (Eawag) and Professor Emerita at the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology in Zürich (ETHZ) and Lausanne (EPFL).
    She is a former Associate Editor of Environmental Science & Technology and a member of the U.S. National Academy of Engineering and Academia Europaea. Professor Hering has played a pivotal role in advancing gender equality as the founding Vice Chair of the ETH Women Professors Forum and received a Distinguished Women in Chemistry or Chemical Engineering Award from the IUPAC in 2015.
    Ulrike Beisiegel brings extensive experience from her scientific career. She has held significant roles, including Professor of Biochemistry and Director of the Institute of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology at the University Hospital in Hamburg, and as President of the University of Göttingen.
    Ulrike has been an influential figure in the German academic system, with memberships in the German Science Council and the Max-Planck-Society. Her contributions have been acknowledged with honorary doctorates from the Medical Faculty of Umeå and the University of Edinburgh, ensuring her insights will enrich our discussion on sexism in academia.
    Ursula Keller, a distinguished physics professor at ETH Zurich since 1993, is celebrated for her pioneering contributions to ultrafast science and technology. Keller's honors include the Swiss Science Prize Marcel Benoist, the OSA Frederic Ives Medal, and the SPIE Gold Medal.
    Beyond academia, she has ventured into entrepreneurship, co-founding companies like Time-Bandwidth Products and K2 Photonics. She currently serves on the supervisory board of Jenoptik and has authored the graduate textbook "Ultrafast Lasers," published by Springer Verlag. Keller's expertise promises to add a dynamic layer to our conversation today.

    In This Episode:
    [03:58] The causes of gender imbalance and what can be done to correct it. Caring for families can inhibit women's careers. Academia is also dominated by male networks. There's also unconscious bias.
    [04:37] Women need to become more resilient and courageous. Men need to be more open and accept different perspectives.
    [05:08] The academic system has a large number of built-in incentives that encourage competitiveness and sometimes hostility. Awards are given to individuals in small groups even though science is done in large teams.
    [06:15] Ursula talks about how the more successful she became, the less she was accepted. Bias towards women is a substantial problem. 
    [07:45] Ulrike talks about how when women become highly qualified competitors, they become a threat to the male scientists. Female scientists are well tolerated when they adapt to the system and stay quiet.
    [09:04] There are double standards for men and women in every sector. There has been harsh backlash against women in politics.
    [09:42] When there's bad governance the power structure is ruled by informal networks.
    [10:53] Power is masculine annot

    • 42 min
    Breaking Barriers: The Untold Stories of Women Inventors With Rebekah Oakes

    Breaking Barriers: The Untold Stories of Women Inventors With Rebekah Oakes

    Women's History Month celebrates the vital contributions of women throughout history and into the present day, marking a period where we honor their achievements and resilience across a multitude of fields, notably in areas like technology transfer and innovation.
    Women have always been at the heart of driving change, with their innovative inventions, pioneering research, and entrepreneurial zeal. Despite the hurdles of systemic barriers and gender biases, their perseverance has significantly impacted the landscape of tech transfer, leaving a lasting legacy.
    In today's discussion, we talk about the stories of women inventors and their significant roles in fostering innovation. Our guest, Rebekah Oakes, a historian at the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO), brings a wealth of knowledge and a deep passion for preserving the narratives of these trailblazers. 
    Rebekah's insights promise to illuminate the contributions of women inventors and celebrate their enduring influence on the world of innovation.

    In This Episode:
    [02:00] Women inventors were applying their unique perspectives to solving real world problems. When we hear their stories it allows us to connect with these inventors in a special way.
    [03:52] Rebekah was surprised to find out that a lot of our modern conveniences and technologies trace back to women inventors and patent holders.
    [04:47] Women inventors have been responsible for the technology we're using for this podcast, including bluetooth, the dishwasher, windshield wipers, and things we use on a daily basis.
    [05:07] The phenomenon of women inventing for other women. Women throughout history have noticed gaps in technology and the market.
    [06:13] Challenges encountered include societal barriers. Many women were just trying to solve a problem. Those who wanted to get a patent did face an uphill battle. 
    [07:30] Manufacturing was male dominated and these inventors were frequently the only woman in the room. Their brave and daring paved the way for the rest of us.
    [08:55] Rebekah shares how Margaret Knight invented a machine that manufactured flat bottom paper bags. Margaret began working in textile mills in England when she was 13 years old. At this age, her first invention was created to increase safety in the mills.
    [10:51] She also had to defend her intellectual property against a man who was trying to steal her patent.
    [11:06] Valerie Thomas was a NASA engineer who remembers checking out her first engineering book from the library called, A Boy's Book Of Electronics.
    [12:34] Women have always been inventors. The US Patent system was created in 1790. Over time, women advocated for rights that would help them enter the patent ecosystem, educational systems, and pursuit of the degrees that they wanted.
    [13:37] Funding was also an issue in the early stages. Successful women challenged society's expectations of what was possible.
    [14:14] The intersectionality of gender and race with women inventors. 
    [14:56] We learn about the inventions of Mary Beatrice Kenner. She invented the precursor to the maxi pad and had positive interest from manufacturers until she met them in person. Mary was black.
    [16:21] She was able to get a patent but wasn't able to financially benefit from it.
    [16:39] Dr Patricia Bath invented the laserphaco tool that revolutionized cataract surgery. She also invented Community Ophthalmology which looks at societal factors to encourage the prevention of disease.
    [18:44] Having a dedicated month to focus on women's contributions in history is a step towards getting us where we need to be. The narrative is also being integrated more fully in the main narrative such as in textbooks.
    [19:52] The National Inventors Hall of Fame has gone through a major initiative to diversify their class of inventors being inducted.
    [21:25] Many women inventors were involved in the suffrage movement.
    [22:21] Anna Keichline invented the K Brick and was involved in the local suffrage movement. As an architec

    • 53 min
    Navigating Tech Transfer and Early-Stage Technology Acquisition With Leah Speser

    Navigating Tech Transfer and Early-Stage Technology Acquisition With Leah Speser

    I’m excited to introduce Leah Speser, a seasoned expert in technology transfer and commercialization, currently serving as the Senior Consultant for Knowledge Transfer & Commercialization at the Research and Innovation Foundation of the Republic of Cyprus. Leah's experience and expertise in the world of tech transfer are extensive. She has an impressive career that spans academia, industry, and international development.
    Today, we’re discussing early-stage technology acquisition opportunities, a topic crucial for anyone looking to stay ahead in the fast-paced world of technology. Leah is here to share her insights, drawing from her extensive experience. We'll cover which types of technologies are catching the eye of industry partners, how to pinpoint these opportunities, and the strategies that can make or break successful partnerships.
    We also dive into the critical roles of collaboration and intellectual property in tech acquisition, providing valuable advice on navigating these complex areas. We'll discuss the tools and resources that can aid professionals in this journey, along with much more from Leah’s vast reservoir of knowledge.
    Whether you’re a professional looking to expand your understanding of technology transfer, an industry partner seeking new opportunities, or simply curious about the world of early-stage technology acquisition, we've got you covered.

    In This Episode:
    [01:59] When it comes to early stage technology acquisition opportunities, making money is a priority. The technology needs to fit with your product and service portfolio and the company has to have the capacity for R&D, applied R&D, new product development, and a way to exit. Either by selling or licensing.
    [03:20] Strategies for finding early stage technologies for acquisition include finding a technology roadmap and do a functional decomposition and see how you fit in with the roadmap. You could also go to industry trade shows to find out what the customer is interested in.
    [05:00] Leah shares how early-stage technology acquisition differs across industries and some key considerations for professionals to keep in mind.
    [05:14] Deeptech takes long investment periods. How long before an end user will be able to use the technology? 
    [06:25] Read Winning the Right Game to learn how to work within an ecosystem. 
    [07:19] How do you deliver value architecture? 
    [08:13] Are the right people in the company? Do they know anything about new product development?
    [09:04] Partnering is a critical element. Internal partners matter too.
    [10:34] Recognize what your business is about. Be in the door building business so opportunity can knock.
    [11:40] Leah shares a story about licensing a dental x-ray shield. It's about gathering information, connecting the right people, and getting a sale.
    [13:15] The magic is in the know-how. Don't blame the customer for your problems.
    [15:02] If it's a public company, you can look at their SEC filings and annual reports to begin to understand their portfolio. Get senior management involvement. Another critical factor is to develop a balanced scorecard. Think about the range of factors that are important to universities.
    [16:32] IP matters most with deeptech. A big factor is the rate of project replacement or churn. Small tech is something that has a very small market.
    [18:49] IP is a business tool that needs to be approached strategically.
    [20:59] Recommended tools and resources include finding your value architecture, developing a business model, SWOT Analysis, and eliminating anything not of value.
    [22:09] Advice for professionals looking to capitalize on early stage technology acquisition opportunities. Be a trickster.
    [24:14] ICA or the Incident Command System. A simple and flexible structure that can be built up as time goes on.
    [25:44] We learn how Leah ended up in Cyprus. 
    [28:37] When Leah arrived, Cyprus didn't have tech transfer. It's a tiny island with about 9,000 people. It's also the highest educate

    • 56 min

Customer Reviews

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9 Ratings

STEMchemist ,

Innovation Center on campus

That was an insightful conversation to starting an innovation center at JSU — way to go HBCUs and AUTM-EDI!

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