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Open Chemistry

Published onJan 08, 2021
Open Chemistry

Chemistry research could get a lot further if it wasn’t so secretive. Research groups generate a lot of process data that gets patented but not shared. Chemistry techniques are one of the most active and profitable areas for patenting, so many labs spend time working around patents by rediscovering similar processes.

What goes into the decision of when to patent? How can we improve sharing of techniques without encouraging this sort of [zero-sum?] duplication? How can we make sure methods are published in ways that are easy to find and reuse?

Proposal: Models + mechanisms for sharing techniques. Models for gaining recognition + reputation + funding without the externality of patents.

Create a concept/knowledge map of patterns being [duplicated] or [sold as a service], as a way to articulate the problem

Existing model: AddGene for plasmid sharing + methodology
(maybe: CIC handbook for basic chem / reagent / alloy data)

Outreach: Talk to people in the world of innovation + patents trying to solve this problem (and inefficiency). Find countries/regions where this is less of a problem.

Specifically: Reach out to AddGene’s local office in Cambridge.
Chat with Learned Hands (Stanford’s legal design lab)

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