Intellectual property is divided into two categories, copyright and industrial property. Copyright relates to artistic creations, such as books and computer programs; industrial property refers primarily to gadgets and compounds such as genes and microorganisms. Copyright laws protect an intellectual property owner against individuals who use the original work in the same form as the author’s. Fair use provisions allow limited amounts of copyrighted material to be used for teaching or research without permission. Industrial property is protected by patents that exclude others from using or selling the protected product. The patent application process, called patent prosecution, is described in detail. Intellectual property may be sold, licensed, assigned, transferred, or given away. The university owns intellectual property developed as a work for hire or using significant university resources. If a private-sector sponsor funded the research leading to an invention, then it has ownership rights. According to the Bayh-Dole Act, if the federal government funded research in part or in toto, then the university has ownership rights. The provisions of this important act are discussed in depth. The chapter concludes with an examination of research data ownership, which is usually retained by the university.
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