When to Contact UIRF
Don't hesitate to contact us whenever you have an idea, invention, solution to problems or copyrightable work. We encourage informal contact by phone or email prior to submitting a formal invention disclosure. Please click here to contact UIRF staff.
We also encourage you to visit us during our open office hours on the first and third Monday of each month from 2 - 3 PM in Callen Conference Room (5 Gilmore Hall). Please contact Mihaela Bojin or Robert Reis for any questions regarding invention disclosure or intellectual property in general
Before You Publish or Present Your Research
An early discussion on research and publication plans can help determine the need for formal disclosure, result in a better evaluation, and reveal effective protection strategies that are in line with publication needs. Together we will also determine steps to increase the likelihood of commercial interest in the invention or copyrighted work. Please for questions.
Contacting UIRF early can also help to preserve rights without compromising publication. The UIRF recognizes that the cornerstone of academia is publication; that being the case, inventors should be aware that public disclosure of inventions can reduce or eliminate patent rights. We ask researchers to contact us before publishing or publicly presenting a new finding that discloses subject matter relating to a possible invention. We can work together to ensure that as many intellectual property rights as possible are retained while at the same time taking into consideration publication needs. The UIRF will never ask researchers to delay publications or presentations but will work with researchers to file necessary applications in advance of deadlines if possible and appropriate.
The types of disclosure that can put patent protection at risk include:
- Presentations at conferences, whether or not the presentation includes printed handouts
- Research abstracts presented in a public forum. This includes research abstracts that are published before meetings either online or in printed materials
- Posters shown at meetings (considered public publications)
- Cataloged thesis or dissertations
- Posting of information on websites. This includes postings on your individual lab web sites. If it can be accessed through the web, it is considered a public disclosure
- Publications. Publications are considered public disclosures the minute they become available to the public. For many publications, this occurs when published online in advance of the printed journal
- Published grant applications
- Meetings with company representatives or colleagues outside the UI where information is disclosed without a confidentiality agreement