IP announced today the creation of a new section of our website entitled Ownership vs. Stewardship. This section will be dedicated to educating university faculty and student researchers and investigators about the landmark Supreme Court decision on Stanford v. Roche. It will explore the theme of "freedom to invent" that underlies research innovation and the wide-ranging ramifications of this High Court decision as it relates to inventor assignment. This education and awareness campaign has been made possible due to a grant from the Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation.

IP Advocate will examine the implications of this ruling, which found that universities could not use the 1980 Bayh-Dole Act to claim ownership of inventions made with federal support. Instead, the High Court decision reinforces the historical rights of inventors, and should have sent a strong message to universities about maintaining those rights. However since the June ruling, university administrations have doubled down on their efforts to restrict the invention rights of university researchers by tightening contract employment language and legal restrictions that do not foster the historic partnership between faculty inventors and their universities.

A number of decisions remain to be made, particularly concerning inventors' rights and how university assignments should be interpreted. IP Advocate will draw upon the expertise of scholars, IP attorneys and policymakers to provide expert opinions about IP rights and the role of the university in promoting faculty innovation.

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Congress officially passed the America Invents Act on September 8, 2011. This much anticipated legislation represents sweeping changes made for the first time in over a half-century that will impact the future of intellectual property, university research and independent inventor rights. IP Advocate opposed many of its provisions. However, we are now focused on educating faculty and student researchers on its new policies and procedures so you can protect your intellectual property today. We have devoted a special section that chronicles the Road to Patent Reform that features expert commentary, news and resources to keep our community informed.

Read Patent Reform to learn about the American Invents Act

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