Role and reality: Technology transfer at Canadian universities

Tania M. Bubela, Timothy Caulfield

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

49 Citations (Scopus)


Technology transfer offices (TTOs) play a central role in the knowledge translation and commercialization agenda of Canadian universities. Despite this presumed mandate, there is a disconnect between the expectations of government and research institutions (which view TTOs' primary role as the promotion of profitable commercialization activities) and the reality of what TTOs do. Interviews with professionals at Canadian TTOs have revealed that, at their best, TTOs support the social and academic missions of their institutions by facilitating knowledge mobilization and research relationships with other sectors, including industry; however, this does not always produce obvious or traditional commercial outputs. Thus, the existing metrics used to measure the success of TTOs do not capture this reality and, as such, realignment is needed.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)447-451
Number of pages5
JournalTrends in Biotechnology
Issue number9
Publication statusPublished - Sept 2010
Externally publishedYes


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