Reflections from Pune

Since its genesis, the Society for Technology Management (STEM) has grown from strength to strength. Its annual summit has witnessed increasing attendance reflecting the increasing importance that intellectual property managers and technology transfer professionals play in the highly vibrant South Asian economy. The STEM Annual Summit 2011, the sixth to date, held from 7th to 9th  December 2011 at Pune, India witnessed the active participation of a host of policy planners, academics, technology transfer and intellectual property professionals from India and abroad.

Using case studies, best practices and interactive discussions, eminent international faculty, globally experienced senior IP practitioners and decision-makers from prominent public research institutions, regulatory authorities and international bodies involved in intellectual property management shared their insights and experience on how IP can be leveraged to ensure enhanced and enduring competitive advantages. Participants at the program had the opportunity to reflect on and apply these principles and practices to their respective institutional environment, policy and business methods.

The three day event saw global experts in IP share their experiences and insights with a healthy mix of participants from public and private sectors, including some from abroad. The speakers at the event included Bina Rawal and Shirshendu Mukherjee of the Well come Trust UK; Aravind Chinchure, Reliance Innovations; Richard Cahoon, CEO of Richard Cahoon Associates; K. Ragunathan, Director, Sathguru Management Consultants; K. Vijayaraghavan, Honorary President of STEM; R. K. Gupta, Head, IP Management Division, CSIR; Immanuel Selvaraj, GE-SABIC Innovative Plastics; Ravi Dhar, BIRAP; Deepanwita Chattopadhyay, IKP Knowledhge Park; and Ashley Stevens, Boston University.

There was enthusiastic response from the private enterprise for the conference. Private industry participation included pharma, agri, chemical, engineering, IP analytics, and legal process outsourcing (LPOs) sectors.

K. Vijayaraghavan welcomed the participants and went on to expand on the idea behind the present program and described it not merely as an opportunity to educate oneself on recent developments in the field of intellectual property management, but also to network and share ideas and views through informal gatherings and meetings. He also announced the Fellow STEM and Associate STEM programs.

This was followed by a series of presentations and panel discussions on various aspects of Technology Management by the speakers. Based on personal experiences in the field the analysis of best practices in technology management provided much food for though for the participants. The immense impact the speakers had on the audience could be gauged by the post presentation Q&A sessions and the discussions that spilled over into the tea and meal breaks.

The summit also offered participants with a practical exercise into the intricacies of technology management through a case study analysis. Dr. Cahoon, Dr. Stevens and Dr. Gupta, serving as mentors to three groups of participants helped them develop a technology transfer and licensing protocol for a case based on an actual situation.

Another key feature at the summit was the technology showcasing session held on the second day. This session provided an opportunity for some of the institutions and organizations participating in the summit to showcase their technologies and network with prospective partners. The organizations showcasing technologies and services included, IIT Bombay, Sathguru Management Consultants, Biotech Consortium India Limited, National Chemical Laboratory, Indian Agricultural Research Institute and more.

The conference came to an end with the announcement of the first Fellows of STEM and the distribution of certificates.