EI’s primary role is to commercialise the world-class research and academic expertise at the University of Edinburgh to potential funders, collaborators, licensees or investors.
We aim to make it easier for business and industry to engage with the University of Edinburgh by developing fruitful partnerships through a range of technology transfer services:
With over 40 years’ experience in developing and commercialising the University’s research base, EI has an enviable record in the efficient and effective stewardship of the intellectual property (IP) generated by the world-class research undertaken at the University.
EI has invested heavily in developing a robust commercialisation process, and in the thorough evaluation of any new idea, discovery or invention to determine the most effective commercialisation route to ensure a successful transfer from the laboratory into industry.
In 1969, the University of Edinburgh became one of the first universities in the UK to open a commercialisation office (The Centre for Industrial Consultancy & Liaison) dedicated to managing its technology transfer activities.
This area of operation at the University evolved since then into the current subsidiary company model for managing research and commercialisation activities at the University of Edinburgh - Edinburgh Innovations Limited, which was formed in March 1998.
EI and its predecessors have been involved in some of the University's most significant achievements in invention and innovation during this period, including:
- First genetically engineered vaccine against hepatitis B
- First miniature digital camera
- First Scottish university spin-out company to list on the London Stock Exchange
- World's smallest television screen
You can read more about our achievements between 1969 and 2009 in our brochure, "Celebrating 40 years of innovation at the University of Edinburgh", which was produced to mark this milestone in technology transfer at the University of Edinburgh. Find out more »
Key EI initiatives
EI has established (or been instrumental in) the following initiatives:
LAUNCH.ed is an award-winning entrepreneurship programme established by EI to support the entrepreneurial aspirations of Edinburgh's students and recent alumni to create new University spin-out or start-up companies. Find out more »
EI was the first UK technology transfer office to make technologies available to license online via instant standardised terms with the launch of Click-thru Licensing. This no fuss approach is focussed on non-exclusive licences for research reagents, software and copyrighted works (excluding those available via standard publication in peer reviewed journals). Find out more »
Open Technology was established by EI to make it as easy as possible for industry, entrepreneurs and the public generally to access technologies developed by the University of Edinburgh at no cost. Find out more »
EI was one of the founding partners in 'University Technology - Invented in Scotland', a unique collaborative initiative by Scotland’s universities to showcase new technology opportunities from Scotland’s academic research base in one convenient location. University Technology’s web portal aims to simplify the technology transfer process and make it even easier to work with Scottish universities. Find out more »