MARKET FORCE: Harvard's Joyce Brinton says tech-transfer officers are best equipped to determine what has commercial potential.
Technology-transfer professionals have a simple piece of advice for new faculty members who believe their ideas have commercial potential but who have never brought products to the market: Get help-immediately.

"Call your friendly technology-transfer office if you've got a good idea," urges Joyce Brinton, director of Harvard University's Office for Technology and Trademark Licensing. "That way, they can get some feedback from someone who knows not only the institution's policies, but also something about the kinds of ideas that in fact will have some commercial potential and therefore will offer a potential for tech transfer."

Technology transfer is the process by which new inventions and technologies go from ideas in the laboratory to being sold on the market. The process usually involves patenting one's innovation, but according to Brinton and her counterparts...

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