Columbia Computer Science

Wednesday, November 24, 2004

Spectrum R&D 100

IEEE Spectrum summarizes the top 100 R&D spenders. Microsoft, Ford, Pfizer, DaimlerChrysler, Toyota, Siemens and General Motors are the top seven, with traditional telecom companies like Nokia (13), Ericsson (21), NTT (25), Cisco (29), Lucent (57, dropped from rank 36 in 2002) spread throughout the index. Most of the spending is in development and applied research, however. "Universities have become extraordinarily greedy and aggressive in prosecuting their patents and, in the process, have backed away from their responsibilities as defenders of open science," says Richard R. Nelson, a professor of international and public affairs and an expert in the economics of technological advances at Columbia University, in New York City. Some academics, too, seem to be more concerned with money than with the quest for knowledge. "When I talk with faculty at the medical school or the engineering school, the notion that there should be some restrictions on their ability to take out patents and license them any way they want to just raises a tremendous storm," Nelson adds.


  • Given academic salary levels, if there were some restrictions on filing
    and exploiting patents based on research conducted at the university,
    there would just be a shift to consulting and other type of (external)

    By Blogger Angelos D. Keromytis, at 3:47 PM  

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