The process of obtaining a patent

Hakan Gurocak’s are the only issued U.S. patents held by a current faculty member at the Vancouver campus.

“We are very excited to be engaging more with Vancouver faculty,” said Preeti Malik-Kale, technology licensing associate for WSU. “Our hope is that more faculty reach out to our office if they have questions on IP, so we are able to better assist them.”

Courtesy of Laura Evancich

Illustration by Laura Evancich

The WSU Office of Commercialization in Pullman collaborates with researchers to protect intellectual property and advance WSU innovations and discoveries to the marketplace. The Office of Commercialization staff has expertise in intellectual property management and assists WSU faculty in navigating the process to acquire patents, trademarks and copyrights.

The first step in the commercialization process is to submit an invention disclosure to the Office of Commercialization. The invention disclosure describes the discovery and helps to establish inventorship. The Office of Commercialization reviews the disclosure, meets with the inventor to discuss commercialization opportunities, and decides whether to file for a patent.

Due diligence follows to determine patentability, which involves research to make sure the invention has not been publicly disclosed in any other way and is truly original and useful. The ultimate goal is to transfer the technology into the marketplace, with licensing revenue going to the university and shared by the inventor.

To learn more, see the Office of Commercialization’s website and YouTube channel.

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