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Graduate School - The University of Akron

Graduate School - The University of Akron

Appendix 131Intellectual

Appendix 131Intellectual Property Rightsand ObligationsDuring your graduate study at The University of Akron and your professionalcareer thereafter, you may become involved with at least one of the three ma1nforms of intellectual property matters: copyrights, patents, and propnetary Information/tradesecrets. It is possible that certain discoveries may have commercialvalue, and therefore may invoke one or more of the above forms of intellectualproperty ownership.CopyrightCopyright, by law, is automatically owned by the author or the authors, employeror sponsor when the work is placed in a fixed form (or medium). The UniversityBoard of Trustees automatically waives any claim of the University to copyright inbooks, texts, or articles of a purely academic nature authored by faculty or studentsexcept when the material is prepared as a sponsored project in whidh caseit is the property of the University. Ownership would then be assigned to the Un~versity or its designee as the Board of Trustees directs. Questions of authorshipare often best handled informally between potential joint authors.Questions of Authorship andlnventorshipIn the event you think you have been improperly omitted from the list of authors,you should first discuss the matter with your faculty advisor. If you have furtherquestions or consider the matter unresolved, you should 1nform 1n the follow1ngorder the appropriate department dhair, the college dean, and f1nally the Dean ofthe Graduate Sdhool. (Questions are usually, and most quickly, resolved at the lowestadministrative levels.)In the event you think you have been omitted as an inventor on a patent application,you should first discuss the matter with your faculty researdh advisor and,thereafter, with your department dhair and finally with your academ1c dean. Followingsudh consultations, either you and/or your faculty advisor, or your departmentdhair, or your dean can request the patent attorney who prepared theapplication to redheck the findings and then prepare a formal report on inventorship.The whole patent application file may then be referred to the Office of GeneralCounsel for a re-evaluation of valid inventors. However sudh as re-evaluationby patent counsel shall only occur with the prior knOINiedge of your faculty advisor,Department Chair and Dean.PatentsAll discoveries and inventions made by you while associated with The Universityof Akron must be reported to your faculty advisor, and through your advisor toyour department dhair, dean, and thereafter to the Office of Researdh Servicesand Sponsored Programs using the standard University of Akron invention disclosureform. This form provides a guide to describing and identifying the inventionbroadly and referencing specific results. Those persons thought to be possibleinventors should also be identified on this form.Patents on inventions made by University faculty, staff, students or anyone usingUniversity facilities are automatically owned by The University of Akron, as providedby Ohio Revised Code Section 3345.14. The final decision as to inventorshipis a tedhnicallegal conclusion and will be made in the course of preparing a patentapplication by the patent attorney handling the application.Proprietary InformationThose engaged in sponsored researdh rnay also be involved with developing orreceiving proprietary information owned by others outside the University (e.g.,sponsors sudh as corporations and individuals seeking certain researdh from theUniversity). The University and the principal investigator may have agreed to maintainthis proprietary information in confidence. In some situations, proprietaryinformation of a sponsor may be provided to you or other project investigators duringa researdh project. The sponsor desires, in these situations, to keep the informationconfidential (or secret) for as long as possible.You are free to use the confidential information in the course of the project anddiscuss it with other students or faculty members engaged in that project. However,you may not use the information on other projects, nor may you discussit with other individuals not involved with that project. While thesecommitments could delay public access to your thesis for a specified time, it willnot delay acceptance or approval of your thesis/dissertation nor delay your graduationdate.The University and principal investigator must have written personal commitmentsfrom anyone working on a project involving and securing proprietary information.Therefore, all research students are required to execute theConfidentiality Agreement (sample form attadhed to this page). Prior to the startof your researdh, it is the responsibility of the researdh director to inform you inwriting of any restrictions on the researdh with a copy also sent to the Office ofReseardh Services and Sponsored Programs, if your researdh is subject to confidentialityprovisions. You are also to be informed by the researdh director aboutthe scope of the researdh that is covered by any confidentiality provisions.If you have any questions as to what information is proprietary, seek guidancefrom your project's principal investigator or your faculty researdh advisor.

132 The University of Akron{Sample)THE UNIVERSITY OF AKRONINVENTION PATENT AGREEMENTName:Last First Middle InitialSocial Security No.:The University of Akron graduate students are required to sign this form as a condition ofbeing permitted to participate in any research activity at the University.1. /ls a condition of and in consideration of my participating in sponsored research or other financially supportedactivity at The University of Akron, I hereby agree to communicate fully with my Faculty Advisor, including discussingthe details of any work conducted by me and the results which flow therefrom. I recognize that this communicationis essential as it relates to any sponsored research, to any course and thesis/dissertation research, andto my safety and the safety of everyone else using the same facility that I use.2. I further agree to disclose promptly to the director of the research and to my Faculty Research Advisor anyinvention conceived and/or reduced to practice by me whether jointly with others or solely, which results in wholeor in part from such sponsored research or financially supported activity. I agree that I will comply with the provisionsof any agreement between The University of Akron and any sponsor for any information and laboratory practiceto which I am privileged to know. I will cooperate in assuring that the sponsor's rights, including rights ininventions. patents, copyrights. are fully protected. Further, I hereby assign all rights, title and interest to The Universityof Akron for its disposal at its sole discretion.3. I also acknowledge that certain technical information that may arise as a result of the sponsored research orsupported activity may be of a confidential nature. I agree to be bound to the reasonable terms of any nondisclosureagreement as it has been agreed to by the University.4. Finally, I acknowledge and agree that any rights which arise as a result of the sponsored research or supportedactivity belong to The University of Akron or to the sponsor as determined by agreement between The Universityof Akron and the sponsor.DateStudent's Signature

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