What Should Researcher-Entrepreneurs Know about IP?

How many researchers in their entrepreneurship journey are familiar with the situation in the image below? Or does it reflects anyone’s fears when trying to commercialize follow-up inventions originated in a lab? How many other IP-related concerns do researchers have?

A slide used for the presentation. This image cannot be used without the prior consent of the copyright holder (Viola Prifti).

One common wish and interests of researchers all around the world is to be able to research freely and publish freely. Any legal restriction is perceived as unnecessary and cumbersome. Law, however, is a means to provide certainty to any social relation. The relevance of law, and of IP in particular, becomes obvious and essential to researchers when they need to protect the creations of their mind, either for academic purposes (filing a patent, avoiding infringement or distinguishing one’s invention from that of a colleague) or for business aims (how many start-ups come from universities?).

Viola Prifti, our team member in Berlin, contributed to raising awarenness on IP issues for research & entrepreneurship in 2 events. As an alumna of Young Entrepreneurs in Science, she organized a webinar on the platform of the Falling Walls Foundation in July. In August, she discussed similar issues with members of the Researchers-Entrepreneurs at the Freie Universität Berlin.

Viola thanks Dr. Olga Makarova and Prof. Dr. Hannes Rothe at Freie Universität Berlin and Sarah Scheck of Falling Walls Foundation for their collaboration and support!

Gaining awarennes about IP helps contribute to a more sustainable future! Can you imagine a world with no legal certainty on business assets and own creative assets? It would be a very messy world; IP tries to prevent that. A fair application and respect of the rules helps create a better future for all!