Background Note | HBS Case Collection | January 2007 (Revised June 2007)

Technology Transfer at U.S. Universities

by Richard G. Hamermesh, Josh Lerner and David Kiron


Technology transfer from U.S. universities to industry has increased dramatically in the last 25 years. Reviews the history of technology transfer with particular emphasis on the Bayh-Dole Act of 1980. It then examines how universities responded to Bayh-Dole, the growth of technology transfer offices, and compares how three different universities (MIT, Stanford, and Harvard) approach technology transfer. Provides an overview of the technology transfer process and issues around current practices.

Keywords: Higher Education; Technology; Laws and Statutes; Education Industry; Technology Industry; United States;


Hamermesh, Richard G., Josh Lerner, and David Kiron. "Technology Transfer at U.S. Universities." Harvard Business School Background Note 807-124, January 2007. (Revised June 2007.)