State departments of transportation (DOTs) are charged with finding solutions that may result in new processes and products that have additional value to the agency and the public they serve. This additional value can be better realized if new developments are managed as intellectual property. However, many state DOTs are unfamiliar with the requirements governing intellectual property rights and the benefits that can be derived from appropriately managing those rights. They may have neither policies nor procedures in place to manage intellectual property and, consequently, have no mechanisms to implement intellectual property for the benefit of the public.
The objective of this research was to develop a practical guide for state DOTs on the management of intellectual property. The guide is intended to define the nature and types of intellectual property (copyrights, patents, trademarks, and trade secrets) and provide practical assistance to decision makers in determining strategies and business practices on the ownership, use, and maintenance of intellectual property. The document may serve as an introduction for agency staff and others who are not trained legal professionals to the principal issues associated with this complex subject. The research team's final report was published as NCHRP Report 799: Management Guide to Intellectual Property for State Departments of Transportation.
A supplement to the report was prepared as a set of PowerPoint slides comprising a briefing on the topic; the file is available for download by clicking here