KiwiNet News 26 April 2012

Commercialisation forum to focus on market-led technology transfer

Hamilton, New Zealand, 26 April 2012

Commercialisation professionals from around the country are meeting at a one day forum on market-led technology transfer in Wellington next week organised by the Kiwi Innovation Network (KiwiNet). The forum is one of a number of initiatives designed to boost outcomes from research and increase the impact of New Zealand's investment in research and innovation.

"Research based organisations generate a wealth of discoveries, but New Zealand only benefits when these discoveries are utilised by industry. There are a wide range of mechanisms for making this transfer happen including licensing to New Zealand companies and the establishment of start-ups," says David Hughes, Group General Manager Commercial, Plant & Food Research, a KiwiNet member.

"The forum is a really valuable opportunity to share that hard won knowledge between research organisations and build networks to lift our national performance at technology commercialisation."

The commercialisation forum will begin with a session from Regena Mitchell from Mitchell Boock Associates on engaging researchers with industry. Professor Alison Stewart, Distinguished Professor of Plant Pathology, Lincoln University, will then share a researcher's perspective on engaging with industry. Anthony Francis from Flinders Partners will follow with a session on Open Innovation in practice. Kate Wilson from James & Wells Intellectual Property will lead the afternoon sessions with an IP strategy session and Duncan Ledwith from Uniservices and the IceHouse will close with a workshop on market validation.

Kate Wilson, Partner, James & Wells Intellectual Property says, "We work with both researchers and industry on IP strategy and protection. The forum is a great opportunity to share insights from each perspective which may encourage researchers and industry to take the step towards working with each other. From an IP perspective there are some really great benefits for each party but it's important to get the fundamentals right up front."

Founding KiwiNet members include WaikatoLink, Plant & Food Research, Otago Innovation Ltd, Lincoln University, AUT Enterprises, AgResearch, University of Canterbury, Industrial Research Ltd and Viclink. Support is also provided by the Ministry of Science and Innovation.

The KiwiNet commercialisation forum, supported by James and Wells and the Ministry of Science and Innovation, is being held on Wednesday 2 May at the Macs Function Centre in Wellington. The event is open to commercialisation staff from all universities, Crown Research Institutes, incubators and other similar organisations and others with an interest in open innovation and market-led technology transfer.

An associated event, The KiwiNet Investor Engagement workshop, is being held the following day, Thursday 3 May, to increase engagement between investors and research organisations. The event includes a pitching workshop and participants also have the opportunity to present to investors.

For further information please contact:

Sandra Lukey
Shine Group
Phone: (03) 374 6753; Cell: +64 21 2262 858