GIST Insights: Lab to Market

lab to market

You are a researcher at a university or company and you have a great idea for a new product. How do you make the leap to starting a company around that product? What is your first step to commercialize that innovation? What are the challenges you will face shifting from working in a lab to running a business? What resources are available to you and how will you find them? When and why will you need to build a team around your solution? These questions, and more, are explored in this GIST Insights!


Insights from GIST Instructors & Partners

"lab to market"


What You Need to Know About Lab to Market

Understand what “tech transfer” is and how it applies to your technology.
Have you heard the term “tech transfer” but you don’t know exactly what it means? Tech Transfer is the process of taking a new innovation from a university or nonprofit lab, and turning it into a product or company. .

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Consider all of the implications of commercializing your technology. 
If you are taking your technology from an academic institution’s lab, you’ll want to thoroughly understand what impact that could have on your technology and how it can be used by the public and by academics. This article walks you through that step, as well as nine others that you should take when deciding what to do with your technology.

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Research intellectual property and your country’s rules around it.
Intellectual property (or IP) is a unique creation that can be protected legally. Each country has different rules about how your IP can be protected, so it’s important to understand the ins and outs of your country’s IP system and any country that you plan to do business in.

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Do your customer discovery!
You may have what you consider to be a life-changing innovation, but if customers don’t want it, you’ll never be able to commercialize it effectively. Make sure to do a lot of customer discovery before you decide to leap from the lab to market.

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Additional Resources

For additional insights into the lab to market process visit our GIST TechConnect panels, our GIST Guru interviews, and GIST Innovation Talks podcasts:


The principles are explored further in our Startup Trainings, Virtual Accelerator, and Panel Discussions.



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