Employment code:

Appendix A2.4

Intellectual property

1. Definitions

‘Intellectual Property’ includes documents, reports, papers, data, letters, patents, trade marks (whether registered or unregistered), registered or unregistered designs, utility models, copyrights (including design copyrights), applications for any of the foregoing and the right to apply for them in any part of the world, discoveries, creations, inventions, or improvements upon or additions to an invention, confidential information, know-how, technical suggestions, and any research effort relating to any of the above mentioned, business names whether registrable or not, moral rights and any similar rights in any country.

2. The Patents Act 1977

Section 39 of the Patents Act 1977 determines the ownership of inventions made by employees – the term inventions includes inventions which are not patented or patentable and also what are often referred to as technical suggestions or know-how.  In summary, under this Act, an invention made by you shall belong to your employer for all purposes if:

a) it was made in the course of your normal duties or in the course of duties falling outside your normal duties but specifically assigned to you and the circumstances in either case were such that an invention might reasonably be expected to result from the carrying out of your duties or

b) you made the invention in the course of your duties and, at the time of making the invention, because of the nature of your duties and the particular responsibilities arising from the nature of your duties you had a special obligation to further the interests of BBSRC and/or the establishment.

For the purposes of the Patents Act we confirm that:

a) an invention might reasonably be expected to result from the carrying out of your duties

b) you do have a special obligation to further the interests of BBSRC and/or the establishment

3. The ownership of intellectual property

Subject to the provisions of the Patents Act 1977, the Registered Designs Act 1949, and the Copyright Designs and Patents Act 1988, if at any time during your employment you make or discover (or participate in the making or discovery) of any Intellectual Property relating to or capable of being used by BBSRC and/or the establishment then that Intellectual Property shall be the absolute property of BBSRC and/or the establishment.

This means, amongst other things, that any documents, reports, paper and data compiled, collected or written by you during your employment are the property of BBSRC and/or the establishment.

You must obtain the Director’s approval for any external activity which may involve the use of any Intellectual Property acquired during your employment with us.

4. Reporting of intellectual property

If you make or discover (or participate in the making or discovering) of any Intellectual Property then you must immediately report the full details of the Intellectual Property to your line manager.  You must also bring it to the attention of the Director in accordance with local procedures.

5. Assisting with establishing rights to intellectual property

At the request of BBSRC and/or the establishment, you must give and supply all such information, data drawings, and assistance as may be requisite to enable us to exploit the Intellectual Property to the best advantage.  You must execute all documents and do all things which may be necessary or desirable for obtaining patent or other protection for the Intellectual Property in such parts of the world as may be specified by us and for vesting the same in BBSRC and/or the establishment or as we may direct.

6. After employment

The rights and obligations described above shall continue in force after the termination of your employment in respect of Intellectual Property made during your employment.  This means that, among other things, you must obtain the consent of the current Director or equivalent before using or disclosing any Intellectual Property made during your employment.  The failure to do so may lead to legal action.

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Last updated 06/02/08
Amendment 13 - February 2008