The Secretary shall provide assistance for the establishment of Cooperative Research Centers. Such Centers shall be affiliated with any university, or other nonprofit institution, or group thereof, that applies for and is awarded a grant or enters into a cooperative agreement under this section. The objective of the Centers is to enhance technological innovation through—
(1) the participation of individuals from industry and universities in cooperative technological innovation activities;
(2) the development of the generic research base, important for technological advance and innovative activity, in which individual firms have little incentive to invest, but which may have significant economic or strategic importance, such as manufacturing technology;
(3) the education and training of individuals in the technological innovation process;
(4) the improvement of mechanisms for the dissemination of scientific, engineering, and technical information among universities and industry;
(5) the utilization of the capability and expertise, where appropriate, that exists in Federal laboratories; and
(6) the development of continuing financial support from other mission agencies, from State and local government, and from industry and universities through, among other means, fees, licenses, and royalties.
The activities of the Centers shall include, but need not be limited to—
(1) research supportive of technological and industrial innovation including cooperative industry-university research;
(2) assistance to individuals and small businesses in the generation, evaluation, and development of technological ideas supportive of industrial innovation and new business ventures;
(3) technical assistance and advisory services to industry, particularly small businesses; and
(4) curriculum development, training, and instruction in invention, entrepreneurship, and industrial innovation.
Each Center need not undertake all of the activities under this subsection.
Prior to establishing a Center, the Secretary shall find that—
(1) consideration has been given to the potential contribution of the activities proposed under the Center to productivity, employment, and economic competitiveness of the United States;
(2) a high likelihood exists of continuing participation, advice, financial support, and other contributions from the private sector;
(3) the host university or other nonprofit institution has a plan for the management and evaluation of the activities proposed within the particular Center, including:
(A) the agreement between the parties as to the allocation of patent rights on a nonexclusive, partially exclusive, or exclusive license basis to and inventions conceived or made under the auspices of the Center; and
(B) the consideration of means to place the Center, to the maximum extent feasible, on a self-sustaining basis;
(4) suitable consideration has been given to the university’s or other nonprofit institution’s capabilities and geographical location; and
(5) consideration has been given to any effects upon competition of the activities proposed under the Center.
(d) Planning grants
The Secretary is authorized to make available nonrenewable planning grants to universities or nonprofit institutions for the purpose of developing a plan required under subsection (c)(3).
(e) Research and development utilization
In the promotion of technology from research and development efforts by Centers under this section, chapter 18 of title 35 shall apply to the extent not inconsistent with this section.
PRIOR PROVISIONS A prior section 7 of Pub. L. 96–480 was renumbered section 8 and is classified to section 3706 of this title.AMENDMENTS 1986—Subsec. (a). Pub. L. 99–502, §9(b)(7), substituted "Cooperative Research Centers" for "Centers for Industrial Technology". Subsec. (b)(1). Pub. L. 99–502, §9(b)(8), struck out "basic and applied" after "industry-university". Subsec. (e). Pub. L. 99–502, §9(b)(9), amended subsec. (e) generally. Prior to amendment, subsec. (e) provided that a Center of Industrial Technology had the option to acquire title to an invention conceived or made under its auspices and supported by Federal funds, authorized supporting agency to require the Center to grant licenses to the invention to responsible applicants in certain cases, and provided for judicial review of licensing determinations by the supporting agency. Subsec. (f). Pub. L. 99–502, §9(b)(10), struck out subsec. (f) which read as follows: "The supporting agency may request the Attorney General’s opinion whether the proposed joint research activities of a Center would violate any of the antitrust laws. The Attorney General shall advise the supporting agency of his determination and the reasons for it within 120 days after receipt of such request."MODEL PROGRAM Pub. L. 101–510, div. A, title VIII, §827(b), Nov. 5, 1990, 104 Stat. 1607, as amended by Pub. L. 102–190, div. A, title X, §1062(a)(2), Dec. 5, 1991, 105 Stat. 1475, provided that: "(1) In the administration of applicable provisions of the Stevenson-Wydler Technology Innovation Act of 1980 [15 U.S.C. 3701 et seq.] or section 5121(b) of the Omnibus Trade and Competitiveness Act of 1988 [Pub. L. 100–418, 15 U.S.C. 278l note], the Secretary of Commerce shall develop, in consultation with the Secretary of Defense and the Secretary of Energy, model programs for national defense laboratories. "(2) Model programs under this subsection shall involve Federal laboratories, small businesses, and partnership intermediaries. The purpose of the model programs is to demonstrate successful relationships between the Federal Government, State and local governments, and small businesses which encourage economic growth through the commercial application of technology resulting from federally funded research. "(3) In this subsection, the term ‘national defense laboratory’ means any laboratory, federally funded research and development center (FFRDC), or other center established under section 7 or 9 of the Stevenson-Wydler Technology Innovation Act of 1980 (15 U.S.C. 3705, 3707) that is owned by the Federal Government, whether operated by the Federal Government or by a contractor, and— "(A) is under the jurisdiction of the Secretary of Defense; or "(B) is under the jurisdiction of the Secretary of Energy, but only if the primary function of the laboratory, FFRDC, or other center under the Secretary’s jurisdiction is to support the national defense activities of the Department of Defense or the Department of Energy."
15 U.S.C. § 3705 (2018)