If You Consult for a Company or Companies

  • Your primary commitment is to the University and your consulting agreement should not conflict with that obligation or conflict with any other university rules or regulations.
  • You need to ensure that your consulting agreement recognizes that title to all potentially patentable inventions conceived, or first reduced to practice, in whole or in part, in the course of your University responsibilities, or with more than incidental use of University resources, must be assigned to the University. This means that your consulting agreement does not grant the company access to any ideas that do not arise as a result of your consulting activities or would be deemed an extension of your University activities.
  • You must not provide the company with early or exclusive access to results of your Stanford research, unless those results come from a sponsored research project with the company.
  • Your consulting activities need to be as separate from your research as possible, so that these activities are not seen as an extension of your sponsored research at Stanford.
  • Your consulting agreement must not delay or prohibit publications resulting from your Stanford research.
  • The scope of your consulting responsibilities needs to be very specific so that it does not grant the company access to work not done under the consulting agreement or interfere with intellectual property disclosure, or publications resulting from your academic work.
  • Remember that your consulting agreement is a legal agreement drawn up by the company's lawyers. Who is your advocate? You may wish to have your attorney review any legal agreements you sign.
  • It might be helpful for you to provide the company with a copy of the Patent and Copyright Agreement for Stanford Personnel SU-18
  • You must disclose this relationship with the company in publications and public discussions of any of your research that is sponsored by the company or related to the company.

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