Patents and Intellectual Property

Where there may be patentable property or any potential commercial exploitation arising out of your University work you are required to inform the Commercialisation of IP Team before any disclosure or publication of the invention, or commercial contracts are agreed.  The University will then determine whether to proceed and file a patent application, agreeing with staff that any future benefits will be shared between them and their Department and the University, or will notify staff that the University has no interest in the invention and that they are free to proceed at their own risk and cost.

Reference should also be made to the section on Intellectual Property (Ownership, Protection, Exploitation) in the Financial Regulations of the University.

Scope: All employees.

How the University supports this:

  • Levels 1 and 2 of the Financial Regulations of the University explain the University’s position in relation to Intellectual Property. You should refer to the sections on Intellectual Property (Ownership, Protection, Exploitation)
  • The Commercialisation of IP Team in Research and Innovation Services can support and advise you in relation to intellectual property and commercialisation queries, and support and guidance is available on their web pages.

What to do next:

Use the `Quick Links´ box on the right hand side to find out more about:

Your Terms and Conditions of Employment and Intellectual and Patentable Property

Use the `See Also´ box on the right hand side to find out more about:

The Commercialisation of IP Team

The University of Sheffield Financial Regulations

Key Principles:

  1. You are required to follow agreed University policy in respect of intellectual property ownership and commercialisation, including copyright and other related matters, as may be in force at any given time, and as modified from time to time by the University.
  2. As stated in your Terms and Conditions of Employment, you are responsible for alerting the University to any possibilities for patentable property or commercial exploitation which arise out of your University work. These should be raised using established University procedures.
  3. The University (or the University’s agreed commercialisation partner) will determine as soon as possible whether the opportunity will be pursued, determining with you how any future benefits of exploitation may be shared between you, your Faculty and the University, or will notify you that the University has no interest in pursuing the opportunity and will discuss with you any specific terms under which you may be free to proceed at your own risk and cost.

Document Control

Last Updated: 03/10
Date of next Review: 03/12