Sponsor KU research

KU faculty have the expertise and resources to work with industry partners to assist in providing solutions for technical challenges.

Industry-sponsored research projects involve students in the development of new technology, which — in addition to solving your problems — provides a pipeline of highly skilled talent to support future needs. On an annual basis, KU partners with more than 70 different industry partners that range from small startups to Fortune 500 companies. It is important to KU to develop a productive relationship with our industry partners to ensure we meet your needs and interests while also advancing science and technology and developing student expertise.

KU has developed business-oriented research agreement templates that are available for use and that may assist in accelerating the contracting process. In addition, KU has developed flexible IP options that are geared to support your needs.

General steps in the process

  • Experts at KU is a great starting point to find the expertise you are seeking.
  • Establish an initial dialogue with the faculty member to ensure fit with your needs.
  • Confidentiality is important to you and KU. We encourage execution of a confidential disclosure agreement (CDA/NDA) for your protection and ours.
  • KU can start these discussions with your document, or we can leverage one of the university’s standard agreement templates. 
  • In-depth discussions with the faculty member to facilitate development of a statement of work that describes the problem statement, tasks, deliverables, timetable and budget requirements.
  • Visiting faculty member’s laboratories is often a way to accelerate this process and learn more about capabilities and opportunities.
  • KU strives to be business-friendly and flexible during contract negotiations. We have a number of contracting agreements prepared that can serve as a starting point for discussions.
  • KU has established flexible intellectual property options to address your needs.
  • KU will work with you to execute a document that is a win-win for both parties.

Accelerating solutions

KU has formed industry-driven research consortia that bring together companies with similar technical challenges and provide an opportunity to accelerate the development of pre-competitive solutions. Examples: Center for Environmentally Beneficial Catalysis + Kansas Interdisciplinary Carbonates Consortium
Scientist monitors reactor in a lab at the Center for Environmentally Beneficial Catalysis.

Flexible IP options

KU offers a continuum of contracting mechanisms that enable industry partners to work with researchers at all stages of research and development. These options also streamline the sponsored research contracting process by providing straightforward intellectual property terms for companies engaging in collaborative research.

Flexible IP options

  1. Company automatically receives a non-exclusive right to use KU’s resulting IP for its internal research purposes.
     
  2. Company automatically receives an exclusive option to negotiate an exclusive, worldwide, royalty-bearing commercial license to resulting IP. In the event of licensing to company, KU retains a right to use resulting IP for its internal, noncommercial research and education purposes, and to license KU-owned IP to other academic or nonprofit institutions for further noncommercial research.
     
  3. No upfront fees or preset royalties. Management of patent prosecution and responsibility for patent prosecution costs is negotiable.
     
  4. KU can publish or present research findings after a reasonable period for company review for inadvertent disclosure of company confidential information or to seek patent protection.
  1. Company pays a license fee equivalent to $15,000 or 10% of the sponsored research agreement (whichever is greater) for a 5-year exclusive, worldwide commercial license to all resulting IP (patentable or not).
    • The fee is calculated based on the entire project budget, including standard KU overhead fees, which must be paid at the appropriate F&A rate.
    • Upon expiration of the license, company has a 3-month exclusive option to negotiate a new license.
       
  2. Company fully manages and directs all IP protection and directly pays for all patent prosecution costs. KU will cooperate with the company on patent claims.
     
  3. Typically, company pays 1% royalties on net sales when cumulative gross sales using IP exceed $20 million. Alternative approaches for product-embedded or process IP are available.
     
  4. No cap on royalties unless the IP improves upon the company’s existing products or processes, in which case the cap is $10 million.
     
  5. No annual minimums or other fees, and no milestones or time limits.
     
  6. KU retains a right to use resulting IP for its internal, noncommercial research and education purposes, and to license KU-owned IP to other academic or nonprofit institutions for further noncommercial research.
     
  7. KU can publish or present research findings after company review for confidential information or patent protection.
  1. Company owns the resulting project IP exclusive of any KU background IP. KU background IP may not be used in research. 
     
  2. Company fully manages all IP protection and directly pays for all patent prosecution costs. KU provides reasonable cooperation on patent claims; additional charges may be incurred if effort exceeds reasonable level. 
     
  3. Company pays an upfront, one-time fee for rights to the IP. Fee amount is determined in consultation with KU Center for Technology Commercialization during statement of work discussions.
     
  4. PI/KU cannot use the developed project IP either in future research, public disclosure and publication or in the classroom (except with approval from sponsor). 
     
  5. KU can publish or present research findings after company review for confidential information or patent protection.
  1. KU utilizes established testing and analysis methodologies; no KU IP is anticipated. If there is resulting KU IP, then Option 1 applies. 
     
  2. Sponsor owns deliverable data resulting from the testing and analysis work as defined by the scope of work. Deliverable data is confidential to sponsor; other material may be publishable.
     
  3. KU can publish or present non-deliverable data or KU background IP after company review for confidential information or patent protection.