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Intellectual property (IP) refers to creations of the mind including works of authorship, inventions, discoveries, results and products of research, scholarly writings and creative activities. IP can also refer to protections put in place for those creations including patents, copyrights, and trade secrets. Technology transfer is the process of helping faculty convert their academic work into products or services useful for society so that those brilliant ideas don’t just sit in a notebook gathering dust.

The Technology Transfer Office (TTO) is USD's intellectual property administration hub and holds the responsibility of managing IP assets developed at the university. Our mission is to assist faculty and students in moving innovative ideas from USD into the marketplace. We also work with faculty who wish to collaborate with colleagues outside of USD and share materials such as mice, plasmids or reagents for their research.

We strive to promote innovation, enhance research, bring the benefits of USD’s discoveries to the public, and facilitate economic development.

Some of our responsibilities include the following:

  • Providing generalized assistance and education to campus groups regarding IP-related matters;
  • Receiving and evaluating invention disclosures and working with the University Senate IP Committee to determine patentability and commercial potential;
  • Seeking patent protection or other protective measures for IP;
  • Developing strategies and plans to market and commercialize USD IP;
  • Working with inventors and creators to find potential licensees for IP;
  • Serving as a resource for inventors who wish to create startups and license USD IP;
  • Drafting, negotiating and executing legal agreements such as material transfer agreements, non-disclosure agreements, technology development agreements, sponsored research agreements and commercialization licenses;
  • Tracking and distributing communications and royalties for inventors; and
  • Administrative reporting