Invention Disclosure Process: Review Novelty, Inventors,Publication Timelines, Funding Sources
Patentability Assessment: Patent Search/Opinion
Commercial Assessment: Marketability, Partners
Research/Service Assessment: Impact on Research Funding
Financial Assessment: Patent Funding Source/Recovery
Invention Disclosure Process
What is involved in the Invention Disclosure Process?
This process involves providing a description of the invention to your technology transfer/business development office. The market potential of the invention will be assessed. Since patenting and commercialization of technologies is a costly endeavour, the invention must have a potential market that would prove to attract investment, research or licensing opportunities. This will depend on the potential market for the product, the likely technological success of developing it, and the status of the area of the technology (i.e. state of the economy, investor interest in the area of the technology and the competitive environment. In addition the invention disclosure process involves an assessment to identify inventors, and to determine if publication timelines and funding sources may impact the possibility for patentability. *If you have a possible invention be sure to talk with your Technology Transfer/Business Development office before publishing, as PUBLICATION MAY ELIMINATE THE POSSIBILITY FOR PATENTING.
Why is My Lab Notebook Important to this Process?
An inventor(s) lab notebook is a record of activity, and can prove the date of invention and disclosure if proper lab book procedure is followed (i.e. a permanently bound lab book is used; each page is dated and signed by both the inventor and a witness; pages are not torn out of the lab book; pictures and data printouts are securely fixed in the lab book). If these procedures are followed, the date of invention may be determined as the latter of the date that both the inventor and witness signed. Otherwise, the filing date of the application in the U.S. may be considered the date of invention. Most countries, except the United States, operate under a "first-to-file" patent system. This means that if two or more applications for a patent for the same invention have been filed, the patent may be granted to the first applicant. The United States grants patents to the first to invent (not the first to file) so evidence of the date of invention is of the utmost importance, especially since the US, being the largest market, is most often the first choice of country to patent an invention in.