Technology Transfer:

Number and Characteristics of Inventions Licensed by Six Federal Agencies

RCED-99-173: Published: Jun 18, 1999. Publicly Released: Jun 18, 1999.

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Pursuant to a congressional request, GAO provided information on the licensing of government-owned inventions created under federally funded research projects, focusing on: (1) government-owned inventions licensed by six federal agencies during fiscal years 1996 through 1998, including the royalties received during that period, and the total number of active licenses these agencies had as of October 1, 1998; (2) whether the licenses were exclusive or nonexclusive; (3) whether the licensees were small businesses, individuals, large businesses, or nonprofit organizations; and (4) whether the licensees were foreign or domestic.

GAO noted that: (1) the six agencies reported that they granted a total of 866 licenses and received $107.5 million in royalties during fiscal years 1996 through 1998; (2) most of the licenses were nonexclusive, most went to small businesses or individuals, and most went to domestic entities; (3) as of October 1, 1998, the six agencies had a total of 1,391 active licenses; and (4) the license types, licensee types, and licensee locations occurred in proportions similar to those licenses granted during fiscal years 1996 through 1998.

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