Louisiana Tech University ranked #2 in the nation amongst academic institutions in terms of innovation productivity as measured by number of new inventions generated per research dollar expended, according to a report released by the Association of University Technology Managers.

AUTMLouisiana Tech also ranked second nationally amongst academic institutions in terms of the rate of new spin-out or start-up companies.

Nearly 200 universities, hospitals, and research institutions took part in the survey of 2007 licensing activity. When normalizing for research expenditures, Louisiana Tech produced new inventions at a rate equivalent to 22.6 invention disclosures per $10 million in R & D expenditures and 14.1 start-ups per $100 million in R & D expenditures. Nationally, only Brigham Young University exceeded this output in each category.

“Over the past several years, Louisiana Tech has built a reputation as a leader in innovation productivity and the efficient and effective use of its research dollars,” says Dr. Rich Kordal, director of Louisiana Tech’s Office of Intellectual Property and Commercialization (OIPC). “Our rate of new inventions is approximately five times greater than the national average of four per $10 million R & D.”

According to its 2008 OIPC Annual Report, Louisiana Tech was awarded six new US patents, signed five new license agreements (two of which were to newly formed Louisiana-based start-up companies created specifically to exploit our technology), executed four option agreements, and received 27 new Reports of Invention (ROI).

Louisiana Tech researchers are also engaging in entrepreneurship and, by doing so they are helping to both commercialize their technology and stimulate local, regional, and state-wide economies. Two new Louisiana-based start-up companies were recently formed based on technology licensed from Louisiana Tech. Both of these companies have recently opened offices in the university’s business incubator.

“Our researchers continue to produce innovative technologies that are of significant commercial interest,” says Dr. Les Guice, vice president for research and development for Louisiana Tech. “Having those technologies licensed by Louisiana companies and start-ups is a major goal of ours.”

It should come as no surprise that Louisiana Tech is capturing the attention of entrepreneurs, established companies, and other potential partners and collaborators. According to Kordal, this awareness keeps the university focused on the future.

“As we look ahead, we are excited about the prospect of additional Louisiana Tech-based products being launched into the marketplace and the positive impact they will make on society.”

Written by Dave Guerin