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Office of the Provost

Office of the Provost
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Research is an integral part of higher education and is essential to effective teaching at the University level. Southern Illinois University encourages its faculty members to undertake research and assumes the responsibility of promoting a research prog ram. The Bylaws and Statutes of the University designate the Dean of the Graduate School as the agent of the University in the supervision of research.

The University also has a responsibility to itself and to the public in regard to the type of research it sponsors and in obtaining from such research the greatest public benefit. All staff are required by conditions of their employment to abide by the applicable University patents and copyright policy.

Research leads to new ideas; new ideas may lead to patents or copyrights. It follows that in regard to patents and copyrights which result from research projects conducted by staff members with the financial assistance and encouragement of the University, there should be an equitable distribution of credit and responsibility. The policy of Southern Illinois University at Edwardsville concerning research, patentable discoveries and copyrights, and the benefits that may accrue from such patents and copyrights is as follows:

  1. Independent Research. Research conducted by a staff member on his or her own time and at his or her own expense shall be termed "independent research."
    1. No claims or restrictions shall be placed by the University on any copyrights, patents, patent rights, or discoveries obtained as the result of independent research.
    2. The individual researcher, however, may voluntarily assign all or part of his or her claim to the results of such research to the University.
  2. University Sponsored Research. Research conducted by a staff member with the financial help of the University, either in the form of a grant or in released time assigned to research, or both, shall be termed "University sponsored research" and all patents, copyrights, patent rights, and/or discoveries shall be assigned to the University. "Financial help of the University" exists when the researcher receives support line (student wages, commodities, equipment, contractual services, travel, computer, etc.) monies and/or research assistants that are specifically identified with the research project in question, and/or released time for the research project. Projects specifically commissioned by or initiated by the University will be considered "University sponsored research." If the University decides not to request assignment of ownership rights, the University may release its proprietary interest to the researcher of record.
    1. Incidental support (secretarial help, office commodities, etc.) and overhead charges (off-hour use of University rooms and laboratories, utilities, etc.) will not be construed as "Financial help of the University" insofar as the scope of this policy is concerned. If University aid does not exceed $7,500 for an individual's project either in actual funds or in salary for assigned time, or in both together, the University will not be considered as having established a right to share in the results.
    2. Staff members shall have the responsibility of reporting to the proper University authorities any invention or development coming from University sponsored research that should be protected by patent or copyright.
    3. The University, or its designated agent, shall assume full responsibility for obtaining a patent or copyright, and for protecting and promoting the property rights inherent in such patents and copyrights, for inventions and developments arising from University sponsored research. Such inventions and developments shall be used to produce the greatest benefit to the University and the public.
    4. Researchers involved in University sponsored research shall share on an equal basis with the University all proceeds from copyrighted and patented results over $10,000 unless an agreement in writing specifies otherwise. The first $10,000, less reimbursement of the direct patent and copyright administrative costs, will be paid to the researcher.
    5. When an agreement delineating individual and University rights, claims, and responsibilities is made, it shall be made in writing before application for a patent or copyright resulting from University sponsored research is submitted to the United States Government.
    6. Any controversy or claim arising out of or relating to this statement of policy of any agreement between an individual researcher and the University delineating individual and University rights, claims, and responsibilities, or the breach thereof, shall be settled by arbitration in accordance with the rules, then obtaining of the American Arbitration Association, and judgment upon the award rendered may be entered in the highest court of the forum, state or national, having jurisdiction.
  3. Externally Sponsored Research
    1. Research grants/contracts between the University and other agencies shall state clearly the obligations and rights of the University and of the cooperating agency and the procedure to be followed in case patentable discoveries or materials subject to copyright grow out of the research.
    2. Materials produced under grants from various federal agencies frequently require the involvement of and prior approval by such agency of the terms and conditions of copyright/patent agreements in respect to development and dissemination of the product, and the sharing of pertinent royalties or proceeds. Such conditions, where applicable under federal or other externally sponsored grants, may influence ultimate arrangements between the University, the faculty member involved, and any private developer, marketing agency, and other persons sharing in royalties or proceeds. In each case the University shall be free to negotiate with the sponsoring agency, so far as the rights of patent and copyright are concerned.
    3. Faculty members engaged in externally sponsored research shall agree to terms of a grant or contract, which require that any inventions or discoveries and patents and copyrights therefrom shall be assigned to the sponsor of such research or its designee.
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