Intellectual Property Ownership
Distribution of Revenues from Licensing of UWM Intellectual Property
The below guidelines detail the distribution of royalties and other licensing income from inventions and copyrighted works created by UWM faculty, staff, and/or students and held by the UWM Research Foundation (UWMRF). The UWMRF may hold such inventions/copyrighted works as a result of (i) voluntary assignment by an inventor/author or (ii) if an inventor/author is required to assign the inventions/copyright to the UWMRF, for example, as a matter of law in the case of federally funded inventions or as required by contract. As detailed below, a large fraction of the initial revenues flowing to UWM from any such inventions and/or copyrighted works are returned to the inventor/author’s research program, ensuring that it is a significant beneficiary of any derived income.
Under an agreement in place between the UWMRF and UW System, UWMRF returns forty percent (40%) of the gross revenues from the licensing of intellectual property to UWM, and twenty percent (20%) directly to the inventor(s) as personal income. (The remaining forty percent (40%) is retained by the UWMRF.)
From the revenues returned to UWM, 75% (30% of the total gross) is distributed to the inventor’s research program (the "Program Share”) until the Program Share reaches $100,000 per licensed technology. The remaining portion of the revenue returned to UWM, 25% (10% of the total gross), is divided equally between the inventor’s school or college and the Research and Technology Development Fund (the “RTD Fund”) in the Office of the Vice Provost for Research. Once the Program Share reaches $100,000, 37.5% of the revenue returned to UWM (15% of the gross revenue) is placed into the RTD Fund, 37.5% (15% of the gross revenue) is returned to the inventor's school or college, and 25% (10% of the gross revenue) is returned to the inventor's lab.
The Graduate School places the Program Share in a separate account for each inventor with PI status. Each account is a non-lapsing, unrestricted research account, which inventors can use at their discretion [subject to UWM policies and procedures on the use of funds]. The Vice Provost for Research uses amounts in the RTD fund in his/her discretion to advance research and technology development at UWM. When inventors leave or retire, their Program Share and any balance(s) remaining in the relevant Program Share account(s) will revert to the RTD Fund. Emeritus faculty may retain their Program account(s) while they continuing to conduct research.
Copyrighted Intellectual Property
Under an agreement in place between UWMRF and UWM, if UWM does not make significant contributions to the development of copyrighted works assigned to the UWMRF, gross revenues from licensing of such works are distributed as follows: fifty percent (50%) to the author(s) (the “Author’s Share”), and twenty-five percent (25%) to UWM (the “University Share”). (The remaining twenty-five percent (25%) is retained by the UWMRF.)
If UWM has made significant contributions to the development of a copyrighted work, the University is entitled to a portion of the “Author’s Share,” such amount to be determined at the discretion of the Dean of the relevant school or college in consultation with the UWMRF.
The University Share is typically divided equally between the author’s school or college and the RTD Fund per agreement between the Vice Provost for Research and the relevant Dean.