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Income from IP declining at Canadian universities even as governments push for better returns on R&D

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HALIFAX — Canadian universities spent $4.5 billion on research and development in 2018, but generated only $54.4 million in licensing income from their intellectual property that year, according to a new report.

The income amounts to a return on investment of about 1.2 per cent, down from 1.3 per cent the year before, despite a drop in research funding. Universities also reported a substantial drop in new innovations, despite a rush of new startups. 

The findings from AUTM, which monitors commercialization from academic research in Canada, offer new details on the conditions at research institutions leading up to a string of recent public- and private-sector programs meant to address the dearth of revenue from publicly funded research in Canada. 

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