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Bob Dole on Corporations

Former Republican Senator (KS)

 


1980: Patent changes let companies commercialize innovation

In the late 1970s, the federal government was investing upwards of $75 billion annually in research and development. This investment was hugely successful. But out of the many thousands of patents that emerged from all that government funding, less than 5% was actually used to produce something commercial. In essence, research institutions were producing amazing innovations that were then stored away in government filing cabinets.

This made no sense at all. Why pour all that money into research if you're not going to use its fruits? That was the question asked by two senators from opposite sides of the aisle, Democrat Birch Bayh and Republican Bob Dole. Together they sponsored the Patent and Trademark Law Amendments Act of 1980, which allowed institutions to commercialize innovations that came out of government-funded research. Bayh-Dole was a classic example of a successful marriage between the public and private sectors, one that had real-world benefits.

Source: The Right Answer, by Rep. John Delaney, p.113 , May 29, 2018

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