U of M Ranked as Sixth-Best U.S. Public University for Technology Transfer
The University of Minnesota ranks as the sixth-best public institution of higher learning in the United States when it comes to transferring technological innovations into the commercial marketplace, according to a recent report from the nonprofit Milken Institute.
It also ranks second in the Big 10 and 14th overall among all U.S. college and universities in the Milken Institute’s University Technology Transfer and Commercialization Index, which focuses on what it counts as four key indicators of tech transfer success.
The report came as Gov. Mark Dayton and the Republican-controlled Legislature sparred over funding levels for one of the U’s top research initiatives—MnDRIVE, a program the school says has resulted significant job creation.
The tech transfer report from the Milken Institute, released late last month, is based on four specific criteria. They include the number of patents the university granted, the number of technology licenses issued, the level of income generated by those licenses and the number of startup companies formed. The results were culled from data collected by the Association of University Technology Managers and averaged over four years, from 2012 to 2015.
By those metrics, the U of M is cited as a national leader among tech-transferring schools, driven by “high-caliber medical devices and diagnostic research.” Its overall ranking placed it behind only Purdue University within the Big 10, and ahead of such notables as UCLA, Cornell, University of Michigan and UC-San Diego.
The U’s strongest point is the number of licenses it has issued from its research innovations. In that regard, it generated a score of 91.9 out of 100, trailing only the University of Washington and Carnegie Mellon among the Top 25 schools. The U also scored highly on the amount of income it generated from those licenses, outpacing other leaders such as the University of Texas and Northwestern University.
The U of M Office for Technology Commercialization says it generated gross revenues of $46.9 million from 528 tech-transfer licenses active during fiscal year 2016. Some 17 startups spun off from school research were launched, putting the total at more than 100 companies created in the decade since the U began focusing more on research commercialization.