Code of Practice for the smart use of intellectual property

About the code of practice

The code of practice for the smart use of IP will be a bottom-up initiative co-created with the widest possible range of Research and Innovation (R&I) stakeholders via a community of practice. The objective of this code of practice is to provide support to R&I stakeholders via recommendations and practical examples on how to handle challenges related to intellectual assets in the current R&I context (e.g. results co-ownership, skills development, valuation, international projects etc.). A preliminary analysis of the answers to the survey “Towards a Code of Practice for the Smart Use of IP” which was run in April 2021 identified some action points at EU level. These include: increasing awareness, harmonising rules and procedures, fostering cooperation of industry with research organisations/universities and providing support and guidance on intellectual assets management.

The community of practice will carry out an in-depth analysis of existing evidence to identify best practices that can effectively boost intellectual asset management along the knowledge generation chain. The community of practice will help the European Commission to make the best use of available information, to select examples, to foster the exchange of information and to support the development of evidence-based policy.

The community of practice will gather, among others, knowledge and technology transfer experts, researchers, innovators, industry representatives and IP experts from the public and the private sector, who will meet online on a regular basis in a virtual environment and have the possibility to invite external contributors. The Commission will facilitate the work of the community of practice, gather comments and necessary data from its members through surveys and/or questionnaires and analyse the gathered data to provide input for the development of the code of practice.

The first meeting of the community of practice, which will be set up based on the outcome of this call for expression of interest, is expected to take place in January 2022. The community of practice will carry out the above-mentioned tasks during a period of approximately 6 months starting from January 2022. Please note that the participation in the community of practice is not remunerated and no costs will be reimbursed.

Who can apply?

The Directorate-General for Research and Innovation (DG RTD) is looking for stakeholders with proven and relevant competence and experience in innovation, in knowledge asset and IP management, in research valorisation and in technology/knowledge transfer to join the community of practice. The community of practice will gather members from the wide spectrum of the R&I ecosystem and will ensure geographical and gender representation.

Stakeholders should express their interest by filling in the online survey. To join the community of practice in time to contribute to its launch, please express your interest by Friday 14 January 2022 at 12.00. Stakeholders willing to take part in the co-creation process at a later stage will also be welcome to join.

Express interest


Translating Europe’s scientific leadership into relevant and sustainable products, services, processes and solutions that support the wellbeing of citizens, economic prosperity, the quality of policymaking and strategic autonomy is the aim of the European valorisation policy. The Commission’s proposal for a Council Recommendation on “A Pact for Research and Innovation in Europe” adopted in July 2021 identified “value creation” as one of the key principles underpinning European research and innovation, and highlighted “knowledge valorisation” among the priority areas for joint action by Member States.

The current and next generation of knowledge creators need to be aware of the importance of the management of intellectual assets (including intellectual property (IP) rights). Providing orientation and concrete guidance on intellectual assets management is crucial to promote the effective valorisation of IP.

In order to help creating value from knowledge through different channels, from the making of innovative spinoffs and start-ups, to IP management and citizen engagement, the Commission Communication on “A new ERA for Research and Innovation” calls to “Update and develop guiding principles for knowledge valorisation and a code of practice for the smart use of intellectual property”.

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