Content - Technology Transfer

Technology Transfer

In Japan, significant reforms have been undertaken over recent years that have changed the nature of interactions between research performers. The introduction of legal mechanisms and policy guidelines by government has formalised methods of interaction between universities and industry. Various policies have also seen the development of the institutional base for the promotion of partnerships.  

This includes 47 registered Technology Licensing Organisations (TLOs), which may be non-profit organisations, private companies or embedded within a university. There are also Venture Support Laboratories based at universities, and Intellectual Property Headquarters.  

In preparation for national university incorporation in 2004, many universities have drafted policies and regulations to structure previously informal relationships, with universities becoming corporate bodies and owning intellectual property. Since then, there has been a steady growth in university affiliated licensing offices and incubation offices for spin-out firms; as well as steady growth in the number of collaborative research projects, contract projects, and license agreements.  

The main types of partnership between the national, private and public universities and industry comprise:  

Collaborative Research projects with private companies (2003: 9,255; 2009: 17,638). Contracted Research (2003: 13,786; 2009: 19,201). Invention disclosures (2003: 8078; 2009: 9,529).

(Source: MEXT 2010)  

ERAWATCH Research Inventory Report: JAPAN
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A list of important Technology Licensing Organisations can be found here


"Directory Database of Research and Development Activities" (ReaD) is a website that collects and provides scientific information on research institutes, researchers, research subjects and research resources of Japanese universities and public research institutions.