New member welcome: March 2019

The PraxisAuril community continues to grow!  We are delighted to welcome four new members this month, read on to find out more about them and how they are supporting knowledge exchange.  



The Institute of Science and Technology Austria (IST Austria) is a young, international institute dedicated to basic research and graduate education in the natural and mathematical sciences.  IST Austria promotes entrepreneurship among staff and students and in 2017, co-founded a venture fund (IST Cube; targeting early-stage tech startups - particularly those arising from academic R&D.   The fund provides initial (pre)seed investments, with the possibility of further investments in later rounds, it is flexible with respect to investments outside Austria (and it is not necessary for startups to relocate to Austria).  IST would like  to invite PraxisAuril members to share details about IST Cube among their spin-off communities, and to reach out to them if they would like to find out more about the fund to contact them (

The Natural History Museum has recently joined PraxisAuril to provide training and professional development to staff engaged in KE activities.  Known around the globe for its world-leading research and expansive museum collections, the Natural History Museum has recently announced the launch of a network of prominent science institutions across Europe who have joined forces through a European Commission funded project to ensure scientific collections meet their full potential.  The SYNTHESYS+ consortium is developing new ways of integrating infrastructure, working on collections together, and sharing best practice and knowledge.

Collaborative research is just one of the ways in which the Museum engages in knowledge exchange, and a recent major new study led by the Natural History Museum and the University of Liverpool reported on a how termites can mitigate against the effects of drought in tropical rainforests. 



The University of West London (UWL) is ranked as the top modern university* in London, 8th modern university* in the UK and ranked as the 50th university nationally by the Guardian University Guide 2019. 

Based in the heart of one of the UK’s most successful business regions, UWL is committed to being an engine of innovation and enterprise in the region by providing access to specialist expertise and facilities, networking and collaborative opportunities, and knowledge sharing and knowledge transfer initiatives.  UWL is also a sector leader in the provision of degree apprenticeships, with more than ten years’ experience in the delivery of a variety of apprenticeship programmes.  The University's Research and Enterprise Operations Office has a strong focus on business engagement and is led by Matt Snowden, Head of Research & Enterprise Operations.

A recent innovation at the University is the West London Food Innovation Lab, supported by funding from the European Regional Development Fund, to provide new product development support for start-ups and small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in Greater London. This new research project combines UWL’s traditional strengths and links to the culinary industry, with food sceience expertise and specialist lab facilities. It helps businesses turn their innovative ideas into winning products by using the lab’s product development kitchen, science lab and sensory evaluation facility. This is an example of UWL’s commitment to translate knowledge into practical uses.  You can keep up to date with developments at the Lab via their blog.

*Modern universities are defined as higher education institutions that were granted university status in, and subsequent to, 1992. UWL received the rankings listed above when compared to all other modern universities ranked in the guides / surveys cited.



Venner Shipley is a leading full-service intellectual property law firm whose clients include universities, major domestic and international corporations, SMEs and individual inventors at the forefront of technology and innovation.

The firm has recently been involved with an EPO Board of Appeal, where questions have been referred to the Enlarged Board of Appeal (EBA) regarding computer-implemented inventions, in particular, relating to computer simulations.  This will be only the second time that questions relating to patentability of software have been considered by the EBA. 

Venner Shipley have partnered with Raconteur on its fifth edition of “The Intellectual Property” special report, as originally seen in The Times on 19 March, 2019. The issue covers internet freedom, AI, video game copyright and the speed at which technology is evolving.