The economic impact of licensed commercialized inventions originating in university research
The purpose of this article is to estimate quantitatively the contribution that university licensing makes to the national U.S. economy. As regions and nations face increased economic problems, they seek ways to augment opportunities for economic growth and to identify areas where public funding can be cut. It is now well-recognized that the research university can be a significant engine of economic growth and job creation. University research and research-related activities contribute in many important ways to modern economies: notably through increased productivity of applied R&D in industry due to university-developed new knowledge and technical know-how; provision of highly valued human capital embodied in faculty and students; development of equipment and instrumentation used by industry in production and research; and creation of concepts and prototypes for new products and processes, which may have some unexpected and large social and economic impacts. Yet clear documentation of the proportional contributions these make to economic growth remains elusive. This article provides detailed estimates of the economic impact on the U.S. national economy of one core university activity – licensing of university inventions to industry.
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