• The motives and expectations of organizations appear to be changing. Faced with both rapidly changing, complex technology and cuts in internal corporate R&D, companies now emphasize external research much more than in the past. However, they also tend to expect concrete results in their R&D work with universities and federal laboratories. Universities seek corporate funding, both to increase money for research and to gain royalties. For universities, one new issue is whether private firms hold key information that the schools need for their research and education (e.g., proprietary genomics information). Another issue is whether universities now need collaborations with industry in order to draw the best faculty and graduate students. Research groups (outside of the defense area) in federal laboratories often face two motivations: the need to work with outside groups in order to stay on top of fast-changing science and technology and the need to draw corporate funds in order to maintain research capabilities threatened by budget cutbacks. Overall, these trends indicate more interest in research collaborations but also different interests that will require forthright negotiations in order to reconcile.
  • Although companies and universities are actively pursuing research collaborations, there is the danger that large, exclusive arrangements at public universities may lead to concerns, on the part of both other faculty and the general public, about the privatization of public institutions. In particular, will universities be seen as responding more to specific corporate interests rather than to a range of companies or to the overall public interest? The question arises of what kind of collaborations run the risk of generating a significant political backlash.

Historical Context

In the first session of the workshop, David C. Mowery (University of California, Berkeley) established the historical context by providing an overview of three cases of research collaboration in the chemical sciences. The first case examined was the pre-World War II relationship between the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and Standard Oil of New Jersey, of which there were also analogs at other universities and other corporations. The development of fluidized bed catalysis was one significant result of this collaboration. The characteristics of this case were that personnel exchange was of central importance, technology transfer was bidirectional, academic research benefited from access to industrial facilities, industrial collaborators obtained ownership of intellectual property, and much but not all of the results of academics' work in industry was published. The second case considered was the post-World War II activities of the Research Corporation, which had by then established a reputation since its founding in 1912 for expertise in patent management and licensing. The patent licensing goals, originally philanthropic, had by then shifted to production of income which created tension with some clients' interest in using licensing to promote a broader set of objectives. The third case summarized growth of university patenting and licensing since the passage of the Bayh-Dole Act in 1980. Although many universities entered into such activities with the expectation of making a profit, it has often been the case that the most valuable product has been other non-income-producing channels for research collaboration and training of students.

Christopher T. Hill (George Mason University) presented a second facet of the historical context by reviewing various models for organized cooperative R&D between corporations and universities. Beginning with the pre-World War II era of organized industrial R&D, he traced the emergence and linkage of university research with graduate education and, as a consequence of wartime mobilization, the increased government role in support of defense. Although academic engineering education was close to practice during this period, their paths began to diverge as federal support of basic research increased after World War II. Hill then traced events that have led by steps to reintegration of university-industry cooperative R&D following the oil embargo of the mid-1970s, the increased global competition of the

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