Tech transfer FAQs

Frequently asked questions about technology transfer

Our goals are to identify promising technologies and seek intellectual property (IP) protection for those inventions that can potentially benefit the public. Then, we help find or support the creation of a commercial partner to take that innovation to market. Not every invention can or needs to be protected, and the costs of pursuing protection can be high. KU works to make informed and transparent decisions that balance the investment risks associated with IP protection, prosecution, and the potential path toward impact. Additionally, our team works to ensure all legal and commercial documentation, such as contracts, is handled with appropriate care.

While the role of KUCTC is an important and often early one in the commercialization process, we do not operate alone and are a part of a rich ecosystem which includes our colleagues at places like KUIP, IAMI, Industry Engagement and more.

You can reach out to us in several ways. If you have already worked with a member of our team (for example a licensing associate), then he/she/they are the best place to start as they will already be familiar with your research. If you have a general inquiry or unsure who to contact, please email our inbox This inbox is monitored daily. You also can find our phone numbers and addresses on our about KUCTC page.

Developing technologies from discovery stage through commercial success can take years. The timeline depends on the type of technology, the technology’s readiness for market, competition in the marketplace, investments/funding, and interest from industry. The national average time across universities from initial invention disclosure to licensing is approximately 6 years.

Inform the KU Center for Technology Commercialization at your earliest convenience by completing the software disclosure form (.docx). Briefly explain what you invented or what software you created, how the work is funded, and if a public disclosure has been scheduled or has occurred.

Each case is different, and so is the level of engagement during the technology transfer process (see an overview of the process here). The first step is to contact KUCTC if you think you have discovered or created something that may have value outside of academia. From there, the details of the situation will impact the timing and level of engagement.

It’s important to maintain communication with our team to ensure we are informed of potential publications, interactions with industry representatives, and communications with potential commercial partners. A high level of collaboration and communication between you and our office will help us stay informed as certain actions can impact our ability to protect intellectual property and helps keep expectations aligned.

When any revenue is obtained by or on behalf of the University by KUCTC from the commercialization of any invention, including royalties, license fees or other charges based on any patent or copyrightable software, one-third of revenues shall be paid directly to the Inventor(s)/Creator(s), one third shall be paid to the department or center to which the Inventor(s)/Creator(s) belongs, and one third to the University per the approved Technology Transfer Revenue Distribution Policy The University portion of the revenue shall be used to sponsor further research and research-related activities on behalf of the University or KUCTC.

You can obtain more details on this policy here