Keywords: Academic Inventions; Article 65 c.p.i.; Professor's Privilege; Third Mission; University Technology Transfer.
The paper discuss the Professor's Privilege rule that is enforced by the article 65 of Italian Industrial Property Code. In particular, the paper aims at assessing the effectiveness of art. 65 c.p.i. in fostering patent activities of university-based researchers and in boosting technology transfer of universities. On account of this purpose, the work analyses a selected sample of university patent regulations, besides empirical data provided by Netval and Anvur's annual reports on patenting activities of Universities. The findings highlight a tendency towards the reassignment of patent rights from researchers to universities that is arguably responsible for incrementing the costs associated with managing patents and technology transfer activities. It follows that the Professor's Privilege can be regarded as non-effective rule and even inconsistent when compared to the regulations adopted by other European Countries. Therefore, after reviewing the reasons on the base of which the article 65 should be emended, the paper suggests that patent rights on academic inventions should be granted to universities instead of the researchers.