Organizational Issues in Technology Transfer at Federal Laboratories

Project: Research project


Federal laboratories are an important component of the U.S. National Innovation System. Like universities, they have a technology transfer mission. While the vast majority of academic studies of technology transfer have focused on universities, there have been very few studies of labs. To address this gap in the literature, we propose an agenda-setting workshop on organizational issues in technology transfer at federal labs, specifically focusing on Department of Energy (DOE) labs. Some research on university technology transfer has demonstrated the importance of organizational issues in explaining performance and the propensity of academics to engage in technology transfer. Such issues include macro factors, such as strategy, structure, organizational culture, and inter-organizational relations; as well as micro or individual-level factors, such as perceptions of workplace justice and identity. At the workshop, we will convene: (1) leading academic experts on organizational issues, (2) the relatively few academics who have conducted research on technology transfer at federal labs, (3) editors of top journals in innovation and management studies and other thought leaders in management, sociology, and public policy, (4) doctoral students from leading schools of public policy and management, and (5) key managers of major federal labs and the federal agencies sponsoring them. Our overall objective is to develop a research agenda that is useful to both scholars and lab managers.
Effective start/end date9/1/1712/31/18


  • National Science Foundation (NSF): $34,958.00


Organizational issues
Technology transfer
Public policy
Interorganizational relations
Research agenda
Management studies
Agenda setting
Innovation studies
Work place
University technology transfer
National innovation system
Macro factors
Organizational culture