for Researchers and Faculty
Tools for UC Davis Researchers and Innovators to file for
an invention or for material transfer.
Now that you have an idea with the potential to change the world, you need to protect your interests. Submitting an Invention Disclosure, also called a Record of Invention (“ROI”), is the first step in protecting your interests, and the ideal time to do so is before your invention has been published, publicly presented, or discussed outside of UC Davis.
Even before submitting an ROI, UC Davis InnovationAccess can discuss any questions you might have and can help assemble a strategy for patenting and commercial partnering.
Best Practices for Inventors
Maintenance of good laboratory records is important. Experiments should be written out and explained in a bound notebook. Data may be maintained in separate folders referenced in the laboratory notebook. Pages of the notebook should be dated and signed regularly. It is best if they are also periodically witnessed, signed and dated by a knowledgeable colleague who is not likely to be named as a co-inventor.
Visit G-40, University of California Patent Program, Appendix E, Suggestions for Invention Record Keeping, for more information.
While discussions within a research group (e.g., within a closed/confidential lab meeting) should not create issues with patentability, “enabling” discussions with others—including departmental seminars, detailed discussions with visitors, presentations at conferences, and any other public/non-confidential disclosures—can be interpreted as public disclosures and can potentially prevent issuance of a patent. The best way to avoid public disclosure is to not discuss your experiments in a manner that others can readily duplicate. If you seek advice from outsiders, then a confidentiality agreement may be needed. In any discussions with representatives from companies, it is always the best practice to have us put a confidentiality agreement in place.
If you have questions, please contact us at any time.
How to Submit an ROI
How to Submit an ROI
Important Update: As of August 10, 2022, you will now access the Inventor Portal using your UC Davis credentials (i.e., the same username and passphrase you use for all other UC Davis accounts). Please discard the previous account information you used for the Inventor Portal.
To submit an ROI, you will need to access our Inventor Portal. The information below provides a guide to accessing our Inventor Portal and submitting an ROI. If you have any questions or experience any issues with the Inventor Portal, please email firstname.lastname@example.org for assistance.
Accessing the Inventor Portal
You will access the Inventor Portal using your UC Davis credentials (i.e., the same username and passphrase you use for all other UC Davis accounts). If this is your first time accessing the Inventor Portal, you will create a user profile once authenticated. This will only need to be done once.
Submitting an ROI
A Material/Data Transfer Agreement (MTA/DTA) is an agreement between UC Davis and one or more outside entities, (e.g., another university, a company, or a non-profit organization), that covers the transfer of proprietary tangible research materials, and/or the transfer of any data and information. These agreements are important to preserve rights and set expectations between the parties involved.
A typical MTA/DTA will include terms that cover:
InnovationAccess has the authority to negotiate and execute these agreements for UC Davis. Most MTA/DTAs must also be signed by the Principle investigator (PI). In many cases, InnovationAccess must negotiate the terms of the agreement with the other institution to ensure the agreement is consistent with The Regents’ principles and policies, federal laws and guidelines and to preserve the PI’s rights as well.
For example, every MTA/DTA that UC Davis executes must be in harmony with some or all of the following:
When a UC Davis PI needs to send materials or data to another researcher outside UC Davis, InnovationAccess will draft and negotiate the agreement. When a PI needs to receive materials or data from an outside entity, InnovationAccess may need to work with the agreement provided by of outside entity that will provide the materials/data. Usually, these provided agreements take longer to negotiate to bring them into compliance with UC’s terms.
To request an MTA/DTA, please access our Inventor Portal using your UC Davis credentials (i.e., the same username and passphrase you use for all other UC Davis accounts). If you have not previously accessed the Inventor Portal, you will be directed to a webpage asking you to enter your UC Davis email address. If your email address is found in our system, your profile page will be displayed allowing you to verify the information in our records. If your email address is not found in our system, you will be asked to provide some information. After obtaining access to the Inventor Portal, you can request an agreement by completing the agreement request fields. Please be prepared to enter the name of the scientist you are working with and a legal contact person. Please also attach any relevant documentation. You’ll be able to check the status of your agreement request right on the portal, and when the agreement has been finalized, copies of the executed agreement will be available on your account. Although most MTAs/DTAs are completed within 60 days, it is important that you plan ahead as some MTAs need more extensive negotiations. UC is also signatory to the Uniform Biological Material Transfer Agreement (UBMTA) which enables UC Davis to transfer materials with numerous other universities and nonprofit organizations quickly by using a standard letter agreement. If you have any questions or experience any issues with the portal, please email email@example.com for assistance. When you submit a request, it will be assigned to analyst with whom you can communicate directly regarding any questions you may have.
If you have any questions or if you need additional information, please contact us.
While copyright law is fairly simple to state, applying it can be complicated because the result varies depending on the particular facts of each situation, such as what you want to do, whether the material was created as part of a job – even whether it had a copyright notice when it was published.
Copyrights to works created by many UC Davis faculty – such as scholarly articles, books, artwork or music – and to works created by students for academic coursework initially belong to the author rather than The Regents of the University of California. To use those materials you need to contact the copyright owner, who is often the journal publisher.
Copyright to works created by UC Davis employees, which may include employed students, usually belong to The Regents. Some works created by UC Davis faculty may belong to The Regents under terms of a particular research agreement.
Because software may be protected by both copyright and patent, and because software is often developed by multiple authors including faculty, current and past graduate students, undergraduates, staff, visitors and research sponsors, determining who owns the copyright for software can be complex.
If you think the The Regents own the copyright, contact UC Davis InnovationAccess for information about obtaining a copyright license.
For more information see the UC Policy on Copyright Ownership.
Definitions of capitalized terms and FAQs are on the University of California copyright website.
UC Davis encourages faculty to participate in outside activities that contribute to their profession, to the community, and to UC Davis’ teaching and public service mission. Engagement with the outside community is a component of the academic enterprise that enables faculty to maintain contact with research directions and priorities in the private sector. Consulting offers benefits to the university’s teaching and public services mission, but consulting must be accomplished within the framework of university policies, including those pertaining to limitations on time spent consulting, compensation plans, intellectual property (IP) and professional liability insurance, and the use of university resources.
The university will not assert ownership to inventions conceived and/or developed by faculty during a consultancy with an outside company, if the consultancy qualifies as “Permissible Consulting.” In general, there are three requirements for Permissible Consulting:
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