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Professor of technology transfer established

Professor Erkko Autio is to become the UK’s first Professor of technology transfer in the physical sciences. The £1million professorship, jointly funded by QinetiQ and the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council, will span five years.

Prof Autio will be located within Imperial College’s Tanaka Business School, which was chosen because of its excellence in entrepreneurship and innovation.
Prof Autio said: “Innovation in engineering and the physical sciences plays a key role in driving economic growth, but the process appears to take longer and be more challenging than in the life sciences. I am delighted to become the EPSRC-QinetiQ Chair of Technology Transfer in the physical sciences and to play a key role in improving the process of exploiting new ideas.”
The EPSRC-QinetiQ Chair has been established to address the lack of research into the most effective methods of the commercialisation of ideas in the field of engineering and the physical sciences. The Chair will develop evidence about how the innovation process differs across industries and sectors through surveys and detailed case studies.
Prof Autio will look at how companies and academic institutions exploit existing ideas in the physical sciences and examine how this can be expanded to cover new markets. He will also look at how organisations can transfer their ideas to other organisations in the same field.

Graham Pitcher

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