Innovation is the key for every economy to grow, and innovation takes place at every layer of the society. Government of India has declared 2010-20 as the decade of innovation to unleash the creative potential of every Indian.
An innovator/inventor in general identifies an issue or a problem existing/anticipated in the economy or around him and tries to solve it not only by coming up with new product, system process or institutional mechanisms but by also identifying the use of existing resources/tools & devising mechanism to implement the solution.
Multiple mechanisms help in promoting innovation such as incentives provided to the creators in the form of recognition, reward, privilege & similar means. However, the most critical aspect is safeguarding the IP rights of creators. It is a widely used tool to promote university-industry partnerships, and they can provide the necessary incentives to facilitate an effective transfer of technology.
The Union Cabinet has approved the National Intellectual Property Rights (IPR) Policy on 12th May, 2016 that shall lay the future roadmap for IPRs in India. The Policy recognizes the abundance of creative and innovative energies that flow in India, and the need to tap into and channelize these energies towards a better and brighter future for all.
In today’s time intellectual properties like patents, brands (trademark), designs, other creative artistic work and innovative products are often more valuable assets than physical assets.
Stimulating the flow of ideas and inventions from institutes to the marketplace aims to benefit society through new products, processes, jobs and economic growth. Looking forward in providing support for knowledge creation and exploitation, the Education Department, Government of Gujarat has developed these guidelines to provide an environment for open dissemination and discussion of ideas along with encouraging institutes to become key players in maintenance and exploitation of Intellectual Property through successful collaboration between academia and allied stakeholders for exploitation.
Under Student Start-up & Innovation Policy (SSIP), IPR strategies for academia has been given special focus. Various kinds of incentives including financial grant have been put in place to support such endeavor. To effectively leverage the same, the IP guidelines has been developed so that the creators benefit optimally. The central theme is to create win-win situation for creator & end beneficiary.
This Intellectual Property document (hereinafter referred as “ The IP Guidelines”) of Education department provides a framework to academic and nonacademic staff, students, research scholars and outside agencies to protect the Intellectual Property and it addresses ownership, revenue sharing, licensing, technology transfer & confidentiality requirements. These guidelines are framed to fulfill the commitment of Education Department to promote, guide & provide favorable environment in academia for knowledge creation & exploitation to develop new innovation & enterprises while creating public and private goods.
The major objectives of the IP guidelines by Education Department are:
I. To develop an ecosystem to support IPR needs, and to give best potential to all stakeholders (researchers, students, public at large) to have access to the IP for their specific purposes and at an affordable cost.
II. Contribute significantly towards making Gujarat a leader in knowledge economy by taking systematic steps in long term. It aims to contribute with substantial outcome to see Gujarat among top states in India in the IP domain.
III. To make efforts for significantly contributing towards achieving key goals of National IPR policy 2016 through academia and allied stakeholders in Gujarat.
IV. To set up IP facilitation centers in academia to help/support the students, innovators, research scholars and employees in institutes and key regions of Gujarat to facilitate IP filing and help in monitoring the IP activities.
V. To see and facilitate that our academia and industries co-create new IP and successfully exploit them to add to state and national competitiveness.
VI. To create, protect IP and facilitate the commercialization of IP and to stimulate innovation by providing a favorable environment to the academic stakeholders across institutes, student innovators & start-ups based out of academia in Gujarat.
VII. To provide economic support to creator and Institute for creation and successful exploitation of new IP.
VIII. To protect, watch out and supervise IP rights in a way that it is protected legally against unauthorized use.
IX. To create favorable environment so that more and more IP based, Innovation driven student start-ups emerge out of SSIP (student startup and innovation policy) and allied support system.
X. To conduct seminars, conferences, lectures and training programs in the academic institutes on IP for creating awareness among students and academic staff. To increase IP literacy amongst all institutes so that creators can optimally benefit.
XI. To set up State level IP cell under SSIP (Student Startup and Innovation Policy) to facilitate, monitor and help in coordinating the decentralized IPR efforts across academia in Gujarat.
XII. To make a strategy to promote open source IP and open innovation models so as to accelerate the pace of innovation by letting creators and end users benefit inclusively from such a platform being used.
XIII. Evaluating the implications of this guideline at periodic intervals so that it can further add value while catering to the contemporary needs of innovation and start-up ecosystem around academia.
The IP guidelines are recommended to all stakeholders in State Universities, Government, Government aided and other Student Start-up & Innovation Policy (SSIP) beneficiary institutes under Higher and Technical Education department in Gujarat. This will cover programs like diplomas, bachelors, masters, doctoral and Postdoctoral fellows in the institutes and other activities not limited to literary work, artistic work, research work, electronic courseware, computer programs, electronic circuits etc., trademarks and trade secrets in the state of Gujarat.
The Education Department will assist in protecting the Intellectual Property Rights of creator through prevailing laws of territory.
Furthermore, it is not a limited approach, but extending to IP creation, protection, maintenance and commercialization of IP, providing training, dispute resolution, IP administration, increasing IP literacy and awareness through setting up of State and Institutional IPFC (Intellectual Property Facilitation Center)
These guidelines mandates for IP facilitation and exploiting other means to harness value from the innovation, creation of student innovators and startups in India and other jurisdictions.
IP Guidelines Implementation Roadmap
State Intellectual Property facilitation Center (IPFC)
State level IPFC will be set up at SSIP cell under Education Department, Gujarat. This will be broadly responsible to deploy mandates of these guidelines across academia at grassroots level. This will have end to end IPR support mechanism and assist universities time to time in effective implementation of these IP guidelines. This will have full time competent staff who will implement the IPFC mandate. IPFC should have access to quality IPR database and tools which can support prior art search and other related processes.
I. State Apex committee for IP: This will be chaired by Principal Secretary, Higher & Technical Education and will comprise minimum five expert members of national and internal repute with minimum five years of experience in IP management. Minimum one member will be an IP expert from industry. Director, Technical education and Director, Higher Education will also be members of the committee in addition to the expert members.
II. State level Evaluation committee: This committee will comprise minimum five members including two IP experts with minimum five years of experience in IP domain, two from academia/domain expertise based on the nature of IP application and one from industry with knowledge in IPR. State apex committee will nominate chairperson for this.
III. State level Advisory committee: State Advisory committee for IPFC will comprise of experts in IP domain, Public policy, academia, industry and IP commercialization, who will advise the state IPFC time to time in effectively deploying the IP guidelines and guide in developing and deploying suitable strategies.
I. Oversee the overall IP related activities at state education department.
II. Facilitate creators in end to end IP management in Gujarat.
III. Will be responsible for implementing IP guidelines.
IV. Build capacity among all stakeholders across academia.
V. Improve, amend the IP guidelines based on need.
University Intellectual Property facilitation Center (IPFC)
Institutes (primarily Universities) shall set up the IP facilitation center (IPFC) for supporting innovation & IPR related endeavors of students, research scholars and faculty members. At university level this will be nodal agency to implement the mandate of these IP guidelines. This will have full time competent staff who will implement the IPFC mandate. IPFC should have access to quality IPR database and tools which can support prior art search and other related processes. As implied, this center will also act as Technology Transfer Office, emphasizing the process of commercialization of IP.
I. University Apex Committee for IP: This will be chaired by University Vice chancellor/Institute head with minimum four members having knowledge in IP domain and related matters from academia and industry. The Apex committee will be the authority to oversee the IP efforts at respective institute/university.
II. IP Evaluation committee
Institute shall set up an IP evaluation committee in IPFC for assessing the innovations and filing, commercializing and related matters of IP. This committee shall comprise different members with experience in the field of IP and industry. There should be at least four members in the committee and from them one member should have at least five years of experience in the field of IPR and one member should be nominated from the industry with knowledge in IPR.
a. The committee will also take part in the proceedings of conflict of interest, revenue sharing, ownership, dispute resolution and any other IPR allied means.
b. It will monitor the IPR activities and guide them accordingly. The IP evaluation committee shall make the decision relating to IP (Intellectual Property) and its rights. If a person in this committee is not belonging to the institute, it would be prudent to get a Non-Disclosure Agreement (NDA) signed. Innovator, creator can appeal to state IPFC against the decision of the institute level IPFC.
III. Advisory committee
a. University shall set up an advisory committee in IPFC which will provide valuable inputs to strengthen IP related endeavors of it while effectively implement its mandate.
b. Every University/Institute shall constitute an advisory committee of minimum four members for advising the university/institute in IPR related matters. Also advise evaluation committee (scrutinizing committee) for assessment of innovations for filing the IP/patent application. The members should have good knowledge of IPR and at least one member should be from the Industry who is working in the IPR field or has prior experience in the IPR field. If any external expert is part of this committee, it is prudent to get a Non-Disclosure Agreement (NDA) signed with the institution before any confidential information is revealed.
I. Oversee the overall IP related activities at Institute/University level.
II. Facilitate end to end IP support and management to creators approaching to Institute IPFC.
III. Will be responsible for implementing IP guideline across all colleges and departments under University.
IV. Build capacity among all stakeholders and maintain an efficient process to support creators.