Intellectual Property Policy, All University
The purpose of the Intellectual Property Policy is to foster the creation and dissemination of knowledge and to provide certainty in individual and institutional rights associated with ownership and with the distribution of benefits that may be derived from the creation of Intellectual Property.
Pursuant to K.S.A. § 44-130, this policy applies to all full or part-time employees, including student employees, creating Intellectual Property using (a) the University’s equipment, supplies, facilities or trade secrets, (b) resulting from work performed for the University, or (c) relating to the University’s actual or demonstrably anticipated research and/or development while under contract with the University. It also applies to student academic creations, whether the student is an employee or not.
- General Copyright Policy
- Ownership of Patentable Copyrightable Software
- Trademark Policy
- Institutional Procedures
Office of the Provost and Executive Vice Chancellor
University of Kansas
Strong Hall, 1450 Jayhawk Boulevard, Room 250
Lawrence, KS 66045
KU Center for Technology Commercialization, Inc. (“KUCTC”)
University of Kansas
Bioscience & Technology Business Center
2029 Becker Drive, Ste 142
Lawrence, KS 66047
Office of the General Counsel
University of Kansas
1450 Jayhawk Boulevard, room 245
Lawrence, Kansas 66045
Office of the Executive Vice Chancellor, KUMC
University of Kansas Medical Center
3901 Rainbow Boulevard
Kansas City, KS 66160
Certain terms used in this policy have specific meanings, as defined in this section. These definitions do not necessarily conform to customary usage.
Invention includes any new process, products, art, machine, method of manufacture, or composition of matter, Tangible Research Property, or any new hardware, firmware, or software technology or improvement thereof or know-how, trade secret, Copyrightable Work, or trademark, service mark, or trade name, and other rights in and to such invention as may be recognized by foreign jurisdictions where applicable.
University means the University of Kansas and all of its campuses.
Student means any full-time or part-time graduate or undergraduate student, regardless of whether the student receives financial aid from the university or from outside sources. It is the responsibility of students who are also employees of other outside entities to resolve any conflicts between this policy and provisions of agreements with their employers prior to beginning any undertaking at the university that will involve the development of intellectual property. If a student is also a part-time university employee, the student is considered as staff with regard to intellectual property developed as a result of employment by the university, and as a student with regard to other intellectual property.
Faculty and Staff means members of the university's Faculty and Staff as defined in the relevant campus’s Faculty and Staff Handbook and/or policies, and includes instructors and special faculty appointments (even in the first year), part-time faculty, and part-time employees. A full-time non-faculty employee who is also taking one or more courses is considered to be staff.
Visitors. Ownership to intellectual property arising from substantial use of university resources by visitors to the university will be termed in accordance with agreements negotiated in advance of such use. In the absence of such agreements, such intellectual property shall be owned by the university.
Creator means any person or persons who create an Invention or Copyrightable work.
Inventor means anyone who has made significant intellectual contribution to the conception and/or reduction to practice of a Patentable Invention, and who satisfies the applicable statutory requirements of inventorship.
Patentable Inventions means Inventions that appear to satisfy the statutory requirements for the issuance of a patent by the patent authority of a country
Copyrightable Works or Work means "original works of authorship" that have been fixed in any tangible medium of expression from which they can be perceived, reproduced, or otherwise communicated, either directly or with the aid of a machine or device. These works include, but are not limited to the following:
- Literary works: books, pamphlets, computer programs, manuscripts, poems
- Musical works (including accompanying music)
- Dramatic works (including accompanying music)
- Pantomimes and choreographic works
- Pictorial, graphic, and sculptural works
- Motion pictures and other audio visual works
- Sound recordings
- Architectural works
Copyrightable Software means a subset of Copyrightable Works that include a computer program (including, without limitation, microcode, subroutines, and operating systems), regardless of form of expression or object in which it is embodied, together with any users’ manuals and other accompanying explanatory materials and any computer database, that is developed
Mediated Courseware means course materials that (1) enable instructors to rely exclusively or substantially on non-classroom contact hours for instruction, (2) make extensive use of technology, including but not limited to video conferencing, streaming media, and similar technologies and (3) potentially could permit students from other institutions to access courses offered by the University of Kansas upon payment of a specified fee. The phrase “mediated courseware” does not include course material prepared by an instructor that makes use of the Internet for delivery or presentation, unless all of the above criteria are met.
Invention Assignment Agreement means an agreement between all faculty and staff employees and the University executed as a condition of employment that provides an assignment of inventions made during employment to the university, with an exception for certain faculty consulting.
Invention Disclosure Form is a confidential document written by the Inventor(s)/Creators(s) for use by KUCTC in accessing an Invention’s IP and commercialization potential. A complete disclosure form is signed, completely filled out, and contains a written description of the Invention that enables non-inventors to understand and practice the invention.
Invention Release Agreement means a contract between the University and inventor(s)/creator(s) concerning release of rights to a Patentable Invention or Copyrightable Software.
Substantial Use of University Resources or Substantial Use means that a Creator/Inventor receives substantial time and/or substantial resources specifically dedicated to the project.
Externally Sponsored Research means research or development at University of Kansas wherein the source of the funds is, in whole or in part, from the U.S. Federal Government or other third party.
Institutionally Sponsored Research means research or development at University of Kansas wherein the source of the funds is provided solely by the University of Kansas.
Bayh-Dole means U.S. legislation found at 35 U.S.C. §§ 200-212 pertaining to the reporting, ownership, patenting and licensing of Inventions made under U.S. Federal Government funding.
Tangible Research Property includes, but is not limited to, materials, computer software, computer databases, prototype devices or equipment, engineering designs or drawings, integrated computer chips, audiovisual works, antibodies, genetically modified animals, and cell lines.
Work Made for Hire shall be guided by the AAUP 1999 Statement on Copyright (AAUP Policy Documents & Reports, Tenth Edition, p.215, lines 15-21), and shall mean works created as a specific requirement of employment or as an assigned institutional duty that may, for example, be included in a written job description or an employment agreement, may be fairly deemed works made for hire. Even absent such prior written specification, ownership will vest in the University in those cases in which it provides the specific authorization or supervision for the preparation of the work. Examples are reports prepared by a dean or by the chair or members of a faculty committee, photographs taken by employees of the university’s public affairs office, or college promotional brochures prepared by a director of admissions.
Intellectual Property as used herein is broadly defined to include Inventions, Copyrightable Works, Trademarks and Service marks, and Tangible Research Property.
12/13/2023: Updated broken link to Invention Disclosure Form.
11/25/2019: Updated to an All University policy and approved by the Chancellor. (11/19/2019: KUMC Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs and the Executive Vice Chancellor approved retiring the KUMC IP policy and replacing with an All University policy).
10/11/2018: Substantively revised; approved by the Provost and Executive Vice Chancellor.
06/29/2017: Fixed broken links.
07/08/2016: Updated to remove gendered pronouns.
04/02/2015: Fixed broken links to Board of Regents Policy Manual.
12/17/2014: Fixed broken links to Board of Regents Policy Manual.
11/18/2014: Added link to Board of Regents Intellectual Property policy, on which this policy is based.
10/20/2014: Policy formatting cleanup (e.g., bolding, spacing).
07/2012: “Applies to” section updated by Policy Office in consultation with the Office of the General Counsel to clarify that the policy applies to student academic creations.
11/2006: Reviewed and updated by the Office of the Provost and Executive Vice Chancellor and the Office of the General Counsel in consultation with the Office of Technology Transfer and Intellectual Property and the Office of University Governance.
05/15/2001: Final version approved by Chancellor Robert Hemenway.
11/09/2000: Approved by KU University Council.