Universiti Teknologi Malaysia (UTM) is taking a different approach when it comes to commercialising its research and development (R&D) innovations. If in the past, it had approached industries after its scientists or researchers were done with their R&D innovations, it now prefers to engage them at the earliest stage possible.
“The old way of doing things is no longer relevant. Most of the time, our efforts and money are wasted, as the industries are not interested in our innovations,” associate Professor Dr Arham Abdullah, Innovation and Commercialisation Centre (ICC) deputy director (Innovation), told StarBiz at the recent UTM-SRI Venture Readiness Programme. The four-day workshop on product commercialisation was held here recently for UTM researchers.
SRI International (formerly known as Stanford Research Institute) for innovation and commercialisation ventures is an independent, non-profit research institute in the Silicon Valley.
It conducts client-sponsored R&D for government agencies, commercial businesses, foundations and other organisations. It brings its R&D innovations to the marketplace by licensing its intellectual property (IP) and creating new ventures.
The collaboration between the two began in the middle of 2010, with a three-year programme called the UTM-SRI Venture Readiness Programme to enhance the innovation and entrepreneurial culture among UTM researchers. “We are currently engaging with SRI to commercialise 24 of our IPs in the Silicon Valley,” he revealed.
Dr Arham said by approaching the industries before the commencement of the R&D activities, both the researchers and the industries could indentify whether the innovations or the new technologies had the potential to be commericialised. - StarBiz