Industry Research Partnerships
The University of Minnesota has strong ties with business and industry, including 17 Fortune 500 companies headquartered in Minnesota, the second most per capita of any state in the nation.
Partnering with industry adds another dimension to your research program and can have many benefits, including:
- Learning about problems important to industry
- Obtaining additional research funding
- Making new connections
- Providing an avenue for your students to be hired into industry
Technology Commercialization, in partnership with Sponsored Projects Administration (SPA), can help you navigate industry research partnerships and can be a resource for you when industry partners have questions about contracts and intellectual property terms.
Sponsored Research - Minnesota Innovation Partnerships
One of the most common ways to partner with industry is through an industry funded sponsored research agreement. The Minnesota Innovation Partnerships (MN-IP) program defines the intellectual property (IP) terms available to the sponsoring company. Learn more about MN-IP and Industry Sponsored Research.
Other models for partnering with industry on research include: industrial consortia, external sales (e.g. testing agreements), and even gifts.
Master Research Agreements (MRAs) are designed to streamline collaborative sponsored research over longer periods of time between private companies and University of Minnesota research. See a list of master research agreements at the U of M. If you are not sure what model your partnership fits, consult the Fund Bucket Project Definitions or contact our staff.
Watch these webinars to learn the basics about working with industry:
- From Industry's Perspective: What Makes a Great Research Partner?
- The ABCs of Industry Agreements - Presentation Materials
- Promoting Your Research to Industry Audiences - Presentation Materials
- Finding the Right Industry Partner - Presentation Materials
- 3 Steps to Secure Industry Funding - Presentation Materials
- How I Obtained >$1M in Industry Funding - Presentation Materials
- Navigating the Challenges of Industry Research Partnerships - Presentation Materials
Other Resources for Researchers
A quick guide to developing successful industry partnerships for researchers
Business & Industry Contracts
Information about budgets, master agreements, and clinical trials.
Startup Support: SBIR and STTR
Federally funded programs that offer opportunities for small businesses to partner with research institutions like the U of M.
Commercialization Coaching Card
Tips to help you connect with industry partners.