The National Academy of Inventors and the Intellectual Property Owners Association released the rankings of the Top 100 Worldwide Universities Granted U.S. Utility Patents in 2014, June 16 officially naming Drexel 61st on the list tied with the Hong Kong University of Science and Technology.
For the past three years, the NAI and the IPO have annually calculated the number of utility patents granted by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office to determine the universities, both in the U.S. and abroad, which have accumulated the most patents. At 34 total patents, Drexel University earned a spot among the top 100, ahead of schools such as Yale University (65th) and Dartmouth College (81st). The patents from the College of Medicine were not included in the count, which would have increased Drexel’s patents.
“We have a very good process for filing good patents that issue, but the more revealing fact is that Drexel produces similar numbers of innovations each year to schools with three to five times the research funding that we have. This is a remarkable level of innovation per dollar of funding that we receive,” Robert McGrath, Drexel’s executive director and associate vice provost, said. “Patents are a key vehicle that we use to help introduce Drexel’s discoveries to industry, and provides the means to deliver our technology solutions to society.”
McGrath continued, noting the importance of research and development to Drexel.
” McGrath said. “Developing solutions to society’s challenges has been part of Drexel’s core mission since our founding, and conducting this type of work helps to fulfill that mission,” he continued.
At the head of this mission is Drexel Ventures which, according to McGrath, works with faculty, staff and students to identify new inventions that originate out of the University’s research programs. Drexel Ventures also manages an Innovation Fund that supports research that takes place with the goal of making Drexel innovations more market ready. Keith Orris, Drexel’s senior vice president for corporate relations and economic development, has been leading Ventures since 2013.
“This is all meant to enhance Drexel’s legacy of innovation in our faculty. We are not afraid to try new approaches and consider big ideas,” Orris said.
Drexel was also noted for its measures in budgeting for research projects.
The Hong Kong University of Science and Technology spent the equivalent of $296.77 million in funding for research during the 2013-2014 school year. By contrast, on average, Drexel University spends around $110 million on research every year.
“We can argue that we stretch our research dollars more than most institutions,” Orris said. He continued,