The reorganised unit will consolidate and build on the work of the Office of Technology Transfer and Business Engagement Center.

University of Michigan (U-M) has restructured its commercialisation activities with the launch of a central unit called Innovation Partnerships.

The new division is based in the Office of the Vice-President for Research and consolidates and builds on the Office of Technology Transfer and certain elements and staff of the Business Engagement Center.

Innovation Partnerships will also launch a Corporate Research Alliances group that will work to develop more sponsored-research agreements.

Kelly Sexton, associate vice-president for research and innovation partnerships, said: “The name Innovation Partnerships was selected to declare our team’s commitment to provide enhanced faculty support as their trusted partner throughout their innovation journey.

“We already offer comprehensive step-by-step service to entrepreneurial faculty starting with invention assessment and intellectual property support, followed by business mentoring and connections to early-stage capital from the Accelerate Blue Fund.

“Our team has now expanded its mission to provide enhanced services to help faculty create new research collaborations with industry, allowing us to leverage our existing relationships with industry, investors and entrepreneurs to positively impact society and drive economic growth.”

Sexton previously joined the Talking Tech Transfer podcast to discuss U-M’s innovation ecosystem. The interview is available to download for free.