Software entrepreneurship skills enable students, researchers and academics to increase the impact of their research software by increasing its accessibility, usability and sustainability. 79 researchers, representing 10 faculties, looking to be informed and inspired.
Before the event, the attendees revealed that they are currently (or will be) developing software and wanted to know about commercialization process and how increase the impact of their research. On the 23rd November 2016 participants heard from experts who provide support from across UCL and researchers who shared their experiences and insights from commercialising their software. The short talks were followed by a lively discussion and a networking session, which was co-sponsored by UCLB.
- Learn from the experience of others
• Prof Jonathan Tennyson (Physics and Astronomy), founded Quantemol in 2004 and is its CSO. He shared how generating income can support ongoing software maintenance and future developments, which ensures that the longevity of the software and subsequently its impact. He also highlighted how establishing Quantemol was included in REF2014 as a case study and assisted his case for promotion to professor.
• Dr Daniel Hulme founded and is the CEO of Satalia in 2008 and is its CEO and is member of the UCL Computer Science IMPACT team. He highlighted that although research software might have many potential applications, it is necessary to identify those who value it sufficiently to pay to use it. He also mentioned the importance of networking and understanding your customers.
• Dr Jun Wang (Computer Science) co-founded MediaGamma in 2014 and is its CTO. He shared how commitment is key in developing a spinout company and the support available from UCLB. MediaGamma was the first recipient of Proof of Concept funding from the UCL Technology Fund in 2015 and received the UCLB One-to- Watch award for 2016.
- UCL support for software commercialization
• UCL Research Software Development team provides a service which helps researchers to build more readable, reliable and efficient code and consequently software product. The team works collaboratively, providing the tools, advice and training researchers need in order to follow best practice and continue to develop sustainable software in future. Contact James Hetherington (Head of Research Software Development, RITS) for more information.
• XIP (pronounced zip) is UCLB’s new platform for the express licensing of technologies from within UCL. It is designed to promote research, tools and inventions, making them accessible to industry and the academic community. It seeks to cut out protracted negotiations by laying out terms and prices upfront and helps demonstrate impact by providing data on sales and transactions. XIP allows you to customize the process surrounding each product, meaning you can be informed and even give consent before finalizing a transaction. The site already hosts software from across UCL including an engineering survey tool, algorithms, molecular modelling and more. Contact David Rogerson (product manager, UCLB) for more details
• UCL Innovation and Enterprise organises events to develop an entrepreneurial mind-set which are open to all UCL staff and students, provides business advice for developing start-up companies that are not based on IP owned by UCL (generally students), and entrepreneur challenges to help students develop their business ideas. Contact Oli Pinch (Training manager, UCL Innovation and Enterprise) for further information.