Each month, we introduce you to a member of our Ambassadors team. This month: Idil Buse Kok Hazer, one of our Ambassadors in Turkey, who is part of the ODTU Technology Transfer Office (ODTU TTO).
Could you briefly describe your core expertise and field of activity within the Enterprise Europe Network? What are key services you offer to your clients?
I am an attorney at law and working as the manager at the ODTU Technology Transfer Office (ODTU TTO). ODTU TTO is operating under ODTU TEKNOKENT, which is the first and the most innovative techno park of Turkey. Our main clients are researchers, academic entrepreneurs and academic startups. The services I offer to the clients are patent portfolio management, IP licensing, contract management for university-industry collaborations, creating an awareness for academic entrepreneurship and legal support on IP matters.
What does it mean to you to be a European IP Helpdesk Ambassador? And what do you like most about it?
Being a European IP Helpdesk Ambassador is one of the best tools to fulfil one of my main goals: to reach more people and inform them about the importance of IP for their business. The European IP Helpdesk also provides me with a very valuable network to share professional experiences with other highly-skilled IP experts and offers me the opportunity to participate in training events on current topics given by EPO and EUIPO.
How would you describe the internal interaction and cooperation with your Enterprise Europe Network colleagues?
In our consortium within the Enterprise Europe Network there is no fixed scheme for cooperating, but when necessary, my main role is to support technology transfer activities and provide legal consultancy on IP-related matters for our SMEs, especially academic start-ups and spin-offs.
In your opinion, what are current “hot” topics and questions related to Intellectual Property (IP) in your region/country?
Considering the technology transfer ecosystem in my country and the recent funding of The Scientific and Technological Research Council of Turkey, which aims to create awareness in industry to license university patents, “patent valuation” is the hot topic. During an IP licensing negotiation, knowing the value of the patent is the key to determining the licence fee. Secondly, similar to a general trend in the global innovation landscape, new inventions at our university in emerging, disruptive fields such as Artificial Intelligence (AI) are becoming more commonplace and raise questions about what can be patented and how.
What are major challenges SMEs face with regard to IP? And what kind of support is needed, you think?
Some SMEs have insufficient knowledge about the (possible) impact of IP rights, how IP can be used as an asset and an advantage against their competitors. Plus, they seem to ignore the importance of an IP for the future of their businesses. Also, SMEs generally argue, that the application and registration procedures of IP rights are very costly compared to the above-mentioned advantages. In order to increase the awareness of IP and help SMEs to create a patent portfolio, we developed a “patent application support” programme for the SMEs in our techno park ecosystem. With this programme, our office bears the fees for the patent application and SMEs reimburse the related fees, if the related patent has been commercialised. I think these types of support programmes have a huge impact on fostering the desired IP culture.