Intelectual Property Development Partnership Contract


A type of contract and relationship that innovators could use to create mutually-beneficial relationships with companies.


If a company in question needs ideas or patents (i.e., intellectual property, that modern companies value), inventors and innovators can definitely help the company by introducing new ideas and helping to finalize their descriptions for patenting them. I would call such role -- "Intelectual Property (IP) Development Partner".

As a co-author of ideas, interested in successful applications of those ideas, the inventor would not be a regular employees, and would not get a regular salary, but instead -- the royalties from inventions patented together with the company, the stock options of the company and bonuses for breakthrough innovations introduced to that company.

The IP development partnership position would work quite simply work by defining an "icebox of ideas for patenting" within the company, and letting the management choose to go forward with them based on their discretion. That would require a simple NDA. In other cases, the communication with the R&D departments of the companies would be granted, by signing appropriate NDAs.

Before sharing an idea on the company's board, the innovator would produce a hash of the text to be posted, and write it into a popular blockchain to make it possible to prove that their idea (verbatim) was created by them (it only requires holding cryptographic keypairs).

The "IP Development Partnership" may be useful for individuals who have many ideas, but do not want to build startups to realize them. Instead -- they want to leverage on the existing resources in some of the companies (like human resources and equipment) to get their innovations reach realization sooner and with less risk.

This idea would be realized, if there were a project derived from it, that would define a legal document in some particular jurisdiction (think of jurisdictions as programming languages), that would define such "IP Development Partnership Contract" template, that inventors could effectively use with confidence.

This idea would help with social rewards by enabling inventors to talk directly with management and R&D teams, rather than purely lawyers to patent them: a richer and more rewarding experience of friend-making with company leaderships, and help get economic returns through royalties, stock options and bonuses from such partners.

Importantly, such contracts would not be time-based, but rather, results based, giving inventor freedom to contribute to company's portfolio of ideas only occasionally, and without any time commitment to the company, may have non-compete clauses, but would not restrict innovator to partner in such way with large number of companies that need inventions and innovations.

Side note: As increasing amount of things in the world get automated, the value of companies will increasingly be tied to IP portfolios, and smart companies will therefore likely want to become IP licensing companies. What's important for individuals, in long term, is recording proofs of IP contributions, and coownership of IP. After all, if the world will become legally fair, the information as contribution proofs we collect will serve as credit. All we need to start doing it today, is to hold and manage one's cryptographic identities and biosignatures.

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