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Apr 12, 2015

How to Herd Cats — Commercialising University Research

This post was, inspired by a recent article by James Alexander from Incubate.org.au where he compares wrangling academics to herding cats.

Organising researchers is often said to be like herding cats. Answer = move the food bowl

Recently I attended a few events about the strategic direction of research in Australia and how to improve research outcomes including commercialisation and innovation.

Clearly there are issues with this in Australian Universities but we are not alone.

The authors of “Keys to the Kingdom.” recently published in Nature Biotechnology compared spinout deals and commercialisation policies at universities in the US and the [...]

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Jul 13, 2014

A better approach to generating commercial returns from University Research

Recently, the Australian Financial Review ran an article about the CSIRO discussing why the people who pay for publicly-funded research should enjoy greater access to some of the tangible outcomes.

The author Adir Shiffman mentions that taxpayers essentially own intellectual property created by publicly funded research because taxpayers fund it. He goes on to suggest that a great way to increase the impact of these inventions would be to allow entrepreneurs access and use the intellectual property.

Adir also mentions that technology transfer people are difficult to deal with and I have my opinions in that space, but this is not the purpose of the article.

The [...]

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May 24, 2014

Stay Secure – 5 ways to increase your online security

Photo by ElectronicFrontierFoundation

In the digital age privacy and security are always a major concern, especially since Eric Snowden revealed the National Security Agency’s global surveillance programs. Additionally, in a competitive environment or industry security and privacy are essential. The good news is both privacy and security can be reasonably maintained whilst enjoying the Internet.

Here are a few tips:

Use complex and different passwords. If you use the same password for your all your work and personal accounts then your work can access your personal accounts. If your password is ‘password’ or your first name then it can easily be guessed. If you use [...]
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May 16, 2014

Push or Pull

Generally speaking, there are two types of research and development, those (1) driven by a technology push or (2) powered by a market pull. Academicians and politicians like to push while opportunists enjoy the pull.

A technology push is easy to identify. Often times these efforts are publicly funded, expensive and lengthy, and involve massive consortiums. Pushing demands lots of publicity and – in the long run – generates limited practical results.  A great example of a technology push is the moon race.

It was an amazing technological effort and on the American side it cost about a hundred billion taxpayer dollars, took over a decade, involved hundreds of thousands of [...]

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