Ohio State University recently made a significant investment in student-led innovation by establishing a new $2 million facility for its Office of Technology Commercialization and Knowledge Transfer. The research center is meant to foster open collaboration between campus researchers and local entrepreneurs.
"OSU is a leader in research, but it has not converted that research into commercially viable businesses that generate jobs, tax revenues and a higher standard of living for Ohio's citizens," project spokesman Brian Cummings explained to the Columbus Dispatch.
The innovative workplace is specifically designed to break the mold of the traditional office, replacing rows of cubicles with an open layout full of laptop bars and ping pong tables to invite social collaboration. According to the news source, school officials admitted that the "dark, depressing" style of the old technology transfer office did little to attract student researchers and inspire innovation.
The school's appreciation for savvy intellectual property management is reflected at several levels of the administrative hierarchy. In an interview with Technology Transfer Tactics, school president E. Gordon Gee cited his belief in the intertwined fates of education, creativity, innovation and economic growth.