Fundamentals of Technology Transfer 8-11 October 2019

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Is this course right for me?

The course is principally for people who are already working in Knowledge Exchange (KE) but don’t feel completely comfortable or knowledgeable about all aspects of technology transfer/research commercialisation, as they won’t have done the job long enough &/or have experienced enough projects to learn from.

You may also be new to KE, with the level of experience of attendees generally 0-3 years.  Some will have more experience, or have held other roles which have given them knowledge &/or skills of relevance i.e. working in industry R&D, sales and marketing or contract and negotiation experience. This means that some delegates will already be aware (and perhaps in some depth) of the content of one or more of the sessions but will have little or no knowledge of other aspects – this course offers everyone a basic grounding across all key aspects of the job.

Whilst delegates will largely be from UK universities and other research institutions of varying levels of research activity, other organisations represented are publicly funded research institutes, funding bodies and companies.  There are often several international delegates also attending the course.

This course is also suitable for:

  • Those in other teams such as contracts management and finance who support this process.

Why should I attend this course?

Many of the technologies that underpin the modern world such as novel therapies, improved medical imaging, renewable energy technologies, new materials or improvements to computer technology have been developed from public or charity funded academic research and has been a major route by which academic institutions have generated impact.  The uptake of these technologies by the commercial world is essential for their delivery to society but the nature of this early stage, cutting edge research can mean that commercial partners can be reluctant to take on the risk of developing them to market ready products – those in technology transfer/research commercialisation roles seek to bridge the gap by identifying the most compelling opportunities, developing them and bringing them to the right commercial partner.

Effective technology transfer is highly challenging. It requires an understanding of technical matters in areas such as IP and the structure of licence agreements, a strong commercial sense as well as an ability to manage relationships with a broad range of internal and external stakeholders.

This course aims to equip those at the start of their career in KE with the fundamental knowledge and skills to embark on this process.  A key driver for the creation of this course is to provide the KE sector with a gold standard foundational course on technology transfer and its role in KE that draws upon the wealth of experience and best practice in the sector.

What will I learn from the course?

  • Gain an understanding of why Universities and other research orientated research bodies value KE and the role of technology transfer and research commercialisation within the KE space.

  • Increase knowledge and confidence in how to identify good opportunities and assess their potential for commercialisation in the light of an improved understanding of their potential markets, IP protection available and possible routes to market

  • Gain understanding of how opportunities can be protected through the key forms of IP encountered in a publicly funded research environment with lots of examples so that they can engage effectively with IP advisors to put in place appropriate IP protection.

  • How to conduct market research through a variety of sources to inform commercialisation strategy

  • How to interact with market experts including engaging with potential licencees and understanding the key role that collaborators play in the development of opportunities

  • Understanding what a licence is for and the key terms in the agreement

  • Increase their understanding of what different type of industry are looking for

  • Building knowledge of negotiation strategies and confidence to apply them through role play exercises, having the opportunity to apply the learning achieved during the course in a complex negotiation scenario.

  • Have the opportunity to hear from (and speak directly with) a range of people from academia and industry who are involved in KE.  

The course also focuses on networking, providing a valuable platform to meet peers, discuss best practice, and interact with the course team and other contributors.

PLEASE NOTE: There may be a requirement for delegates to undertake some pre-course work/reading before the course begins.

View draft programme (subject to change)


The course will be held at Burleigh Court which is located on the Loughborough University campus (West Entrance). Loughborough railway station is three miles away - taxis are available at the station or there is a regular shuttle bus every 20 minutes from the station to the venue. If you are driving, Burleigh Court is one mile from junction 23 on the M1; ample free secure on-site car parking is available. Nottingham East Midlands Airport is just eight miles away.


Discounted bed and breakfast accommodation is available at Burleigh Court at £92 per night, per person. Please book your accommodation direct with Burleigh Court by calling 01509 633030 and quote the PraxisAuril event reference number 321307 in order to receive the discounted rate. Discounted rates are not available when booking accommodation online.  Any bedrooms that are not booked by Tuesday 10 September 2019 will be released. Accommodation may still be available at Burleigh Court after this date but might not be at the discounted rate.

Please note that the course begins with registration, including dinner and drinks, on Tuesday 8 October 2019 from 1830-2030.


20 ATTP Points

8th October - 11th October


Course fee (Member Price £1,125) £ 1495.00

Meet the Speakers/Trainers

Gavin Smith RTTP

Course Director
Director - IP Development (Lancaster University, retired)
Gavin Smith, now retired, was Director of Lancaster University Business Enterprises Ltd. He was responsible for commercialisation of research from all departments of Lancaster University, including evaluations, patenting, marketing, licensing, spinout company formation and also using IP to assist in winning collaborative research grants. Gavin was an undergraduate and postgraduate at Cambridge University. After a period as a post-doctoral researcher and then travelling, he spent many years in SMEs operating in the electronics, software and banking sectors, and as an independent consultant. He has been and continues to be a director of several university and independent companies.

Sue Sundstrom RTTP

Co-Course Director
Head of Commercialisation and Impact Development, University of Bristol (retired)
Sue joined the university sector in 2002 initially as Director, Lifescience Enterprise at the University of Southampton and now as Head of Technology Transfer at the University of Bristol, following a career with AstraZeneca. Whilst with AstraZeneca, Sue undertook a range of commercial roles in marketing (UK and international), corporate strategy (new and existing businesses), business development and general management. As Managing Director of a French subsidiary she turned it from loss making to profit in 2 years through a rigorous prioritisation and rationalisation process. She was responsible for the sale of a subsidiary in Chile to one of its customers, negotiating a good price while protecting staff and maintaining an appropriate supply arrangement.

Tim Cook

Co-director NQIT (retired)
Tim Cook advises universities on technology transfer, including Oxford since 1997 and Cambridge since 2004. He was Chairman of the Knowledge Starts Programme for University Spin-outs in Sheffield, and the South Yorkshire Seed Fund Pilot Programme and has lectured in the USA, Japan, Australia, South America and many European countries. From 1997 Tim Cook headed Oxford University Innovation (previously Isis Innovation), Oxford University’s technology transfer company, helping develop it into what the Lambert Review described as “one of the best university technology transfer offices in the country”. After retiring from his executive role in 2007 but remaining on the Isis board until 2014, he joined the boards of Oxford Gene Technology, an Oxford University spin-out, and Lombard Medical Technology, a quoted medical device company. He was Co-Director of the Networked Quantum Information Technologies Hub from 2014-16 and is now retired. From 1990 to 1997 he was a private investor and founding Managing Director of two successful companies, Oxford Semiconductor and Oxford Asymmetry, a spin-out from Oxford University. From 1975 to 1990 he held various management roles in technology-based businesses including Managing Director positions from 1983. His academic training and career reflect his “trans-cultural” approach, consisting of a degree in Physics, a doctorate in Cryogenic Engineering both at Oxford University, a Higher National Certificate in Mechanical Engineering at Oxford Brookes and a Diploma in Accountancy and Finance. He is a Fellow of the Institute of Physics, a Fellow by Special Election at St Catherine’s College Oxford, and was Visiting Professor in Science Entrepreneurship at the Saïd Business School, Oxford from 2006 to 2009.

Dr. Gillian Davis

Commercialisation Director, Cambridge Enterprise Ltd
Gillian joined the Technology Transfer organisation of the University of Cambridge, Cambridge Enterprise Limited, in 2009. She has extensive experience of working with researchers in the Physical Sciences space helping them develop their ideas into opportunities that are attractive to industry and investors. She holds a BA in Natural Sciences from Oxford University and a doctorate in laser applications. Having spent ten years as an R&D engineer, she moved into hi-tech business development in 1997, obtaining an MBA with the Open University in 1998. After running the subsidiary of the US company Noise Cancellation Technologies for ten years, she took up the post of Commercial Director at Dolomite Microfluidics in 2007.

Matthew Dixon

Partner, HGF Limited
Matt’s technical expertise covers the broad fields of physics, engineering, electronics and software. He has worked with companies in sectors as diverse as medical devices, wind turbines, robotic vehicles, telecommunications security and air conditioning systems, helping those businesses develop effective intellectual property strategies that match their commercial objectives. Matt’s clients are located primarily in London and the South East of England, but also in the Netherlands, Denmark, Norway and Sweden. In addition to IP strategy advice, Matt has a wealth of experience representing major multi-national corporations in multi-party Opposition and Appeal proceedings before the European Patent Office, including a period of three years based in Munich. He has been most active in oppositions relating to medical devices, such as absorbent products, negative pressure wound therapy, auto-injectors and super-resolution fluorescence microscopy. While studying physics at Imperial College, London, Matt spent a year at the University of Freiburg, Germany, developing drift chamber detectors for the Large Electron Positron Collider at the European Centre for Nuclear Research (CERN) in Switzerland. During this time, he became fluent in German. Matt qualified as a Chartered Patent Attorney and European Patent Attorney in 1998, winning the Gill Prize for the highest overall mark in the British qualifying examinations. Matt joined HGF in 2009 as a Partner in the London office. He heads the firm’s Engineering Group, which specialises in the aerospace, automotive, energy, medical device and packaging sectors. Since 2009, Matt has been recognised by Intellectual Asset Management magazine in their IAM 300 rankings as one of the world’s leading intellectual property strategists. He is one of the few patent attorneys in the world also to be recognised in the IAM 1000 ranking of the world’s leading patent professionals. Matt is also recognised by Managing Intellectual Property magazine as an IP Star in the field of patent strategy, oral proceedings and opinion work. Matt is a member of the Council of the Chartered Institute of Patent Attorneys, for whom he is Chairman of the Joint Business Practice Committee and Vice Chairman of the Media and Public Relations Committee. He is also a regular presenter on patent law and practice for businesses and research institutions, including as a guest lecturer on the Fundamentals of Technology Transfer course run by PraxisAuril.

Mr. Nicholas Ferrar

Partner, Adamson Jones
Nic Ferrar holds a Masters of Mechanical Engineering degree from the University of Leeds. After graduating, Nic took a commercial role within the engineering software industry, which involved managing accounts in the automotive, aerospace and marine industries. Nic joined the patent profession in 2003, working for a London-based private practice. Since that time Nic has also gained experience in industry, at Rolls-Royce plc, where he both handled a patent prosecution caseload and advised the business on commercial Intellectual Property matters. Nic qualified as a Patent Attorney in 2007 and has handled a wide variety of technical subject matter across a number of engineering disciplines, including aerospace, manufacturing, power and HVAC, as well as more general consumer goods. Nic also maintains a strong interest in IP protection for software-related innovations and has successfully prosecuted a number of patent applications in fields including design, analysis, control, diagnostics and health monitoring. Nic is a Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Patent Attorneys and a member of the Institute’s Computer Technology Committee, and a Member of the European Patents Institute. Nic was recommended in the Legal 500 UK 2017 PATMA: Patent Attorneys rankings.

Robert Marshall

, Robert Marshall & Associates
Robert Marshall is passionately interested in the psychology of the workplace, staff motivation and dispute resolution. After two decades working at a senior level in the university sector and manufacturing management, he now provides training, consultancy, personal coaching and advice on technology transfer, commercial negotiation, conflict resolution and management development for a wide range of private and public sector clients worldwide. Robert was Head of Technology Transfer at the University of Cambridge, where he was instrumental in the creation and development of the Technology Transfer Office (now called Cambridge Enterprise). For four years he was Director of Research & Business Services at the University of East Anglia (UK), and before that he worked in manufacturing management, consultancy, research management and as a quality manager in specialist engineering companies. He has many years of practical experience in successfully negotiating commercial contracts and agreements, as well as in strategic development, business process design, and managing large teams and budgets. In recent years, he has trained the most senior civil servants in many countries, as well as business leaders, academics and administrators. Robert’s recent clients include The University of Cambridge, Imperial College London, the London School of Economics & Political Science (where he is an Associate Lecturer), the European Association of Science and Technology Transfer Professionals (ASTP-Proton), Management Forum Ltd, the Universities of Liverpool, Exeter, Aachen, Leuven, Gerona and Copenhagen, the Research Council of Norway, Cancer Research Technology and the governments of Ireland, Singapore, Thailand, Taiwan, Brunei, China and many more.

Lisa Page

Legal Director, Shoosmiths
Dr Lisa Page is an IP lawyer who leads our pharmaceutical and life sciences practice with a particular focus on research and development agreements. A PhD in molecular microbiology coupled with direct practical experience of working in the pharmaceutical industry makes her unique as she truly understand the issues faced by clients in the Life Sciences’ sector. Project management for a CRO and in-house legal roles, including at a University in-house legal team, mean that her advice is tailored and always pragmatic. Lisa’s practical experience includes drug development, registration, regulatory, pharmacovigilance, pre-clinical and clinical development, CTM supply, collaborations and spin-outs. This deep understanding of the development stage of new products, the pipeline, co-development, out-licensing and in-licensing arrangements and clinical development is a critical factor for clients. Her background means that she can speak clients’ language when providing specialist advice in relation to development programmes and exploitation of Life Science technologies.

Sue Ratcliffe

Head of IP, Synthomer UK
Sue is Head of IP at Synthomer and is an experienced Patent & Trade Mark attorney who has worked within in-house functions and in private practice as well as within tech the teach transfer department at Swansea University. Sue has experience in a range of areas in IP and has strong business & professional skills in Patent Litigation, Patent Prosecution, Dispute Resolution, and IP Commercialisation & Strategy. She has also worked in the education sector lecturing in IP law and has been a visiting Professor at institutions lecturing in IP law with a particular focus on International IP laws and conventions.

Cath Spence

Principal Licensing & Ventures Manager - Incubator Lead, Oxford University Innovation
Cath Spence is the Head of Technology Commercialisation at the University of Reading. She has a background in physics, electronics and software and has worked in every size of company from a one ‘man’ band to a 5,000 multi-national. After 25 years in ‘the real world’, she moved into the technology transfer world 7 years ago. She is passionate about the role which she describes as a ‘professor to industry’ translation module. She thoroughly enjoys managing the diversity of ideas that cross her desk and meeting the fascinating and varied people who generate those ideas. Her biggest challenge is avoiding getting too involved in some of the projects. <br /> Outside of work she has a variety of things which fill her time. She is a minister in her local church where she can be found leading youth work and music. She is a keen kayaker and enjoys heading out on the river with her two teenage boys and she is also, along with her husband, part of a rock band which raises money for a number of projects, her favourite of which is an orphanage in Tanzania which she has had the privilege of visiting on a number of occasions.

Dermot Tierney

Intellectual Property Manager, Queen's University Belfast
Dermot is the IP & Licensing Manager at the Queen’s University of Belfast where he leads the IP and Licensing team. He is responsible for managing the university’s licence income, IP out-licensing, developing spin-outs, and early technology feasibility. Prior to joining Queen’s Dermot was Senior Licensing Manager in the Technological University Dublin, which was a similar commercialisation and technology transfer role focused on negotiating new deals. Prior to working in tech transfer dermot worked within industry in the publishing sector and has been a founder and non-ex in a number of early stage technology companies. Dermot has a BA from Ulster University and an MBA from UCD Smurfit. He enjoys long walks on the beach.

Dr. Andrew Walsh RTTP

Director, Academic Liaison, GlaxoSmithKline
Andy Walsh joined GSK in August 2017 as a member of the Academic Liaison team where he supports the engagement between GSK scientist and their collaborators in academia. Previously he worked at Cambridge Enterprise where he managed a wide range of technologies in the life sciences field from novel approaches in medical imaging through to novel therapeutics through license deals and spin-out company formation. Before joining the technology transfer profession, Andy was a researcher in the field of molecular biology, first at the University of Leeds and then at the MRC Laboratory of Molecular Biology in Cambridge.

Julie Coombes

Events Manager, PraxisAuril
I am the Event Manager responsible for organising this event. If you need to contact me please email or phone 01223 659962.

Ciara McGahey

Events Coordinator, PraxisAuril
I am the Event Coordinator responsible for this event. If you need to contact me please email or phone 01223 659951.
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