When I mention iEdison to researchers, I am sure their minds wander to what is iEdison. It is NOT a new ‘i’ product from Apple; but, it is named for a cool researcher. iEdison is related to reporting inventions and patents which result from federally sponsored research. In essence, iEdison (interagency Edison) is a tool for reporting the intellectual property (IP) which result from the NSF, NIH, DOE, etc., grants.

When research is funded by a Federal agency, there is an expectation of the research addressing a societal issue. There is a hope that the results of that research will include inventions and patents that can be pursued to continue to address the issue. If inventions resulted from historical research funded by the Federal Government, the Federal Government would own – retain all rights – in the results.

In 1980, the Bayh-Dole Act was passed to allow small businesses and non-profit institutions, such as the University of Oklahoma, to elect to take title to federally funded inventions under certain terms and conditions. There are certain regulatory requirements in which we must abide. The University meets these requirements by following the regulations and reporting resulting IP via iEdison. OTC manages the reporting to iEdison for the University.

iEdison is the online, relational database designed around the reporting requirements of the Bayh-Dole Act and its implementing regulations. It allows recipients of federal research funding to report subject inventions and patents to the federal funding agency that issued the funding award. Several federal agencies use iEdison, so this single online resource lets funding recipients report to many different funding agencies. The system is used by both the funding recipients to report information and documentation into iEdison as well as by the funding agencies to receive and review the information and documentation submitted.

In our office, we term this as federal reporting; but, researchers still have reporting of IP in the annual or final reports. With iEdison, we report and respond to the regulatory requirements. As these are required by regulation – law – we have an ongoing obligation to report accordingly. Just like annual and final reports are required, reporting IP via iEdison is required, as well. Without reporting, future University research may be jeopardized.