Technology transfer, Poitiers begins its development
In order to support research and innovation within companies, the French state has chosen the Future Investment Programme. Since 2017, the third part of the programme has been launched with a budget of 10 billion euros in three areas: higher education and research, research enhancement, innovation and business development. For example, this program funded Poetis, a Bordeaux-based project for laser bioprinting of living tissue. Poetis was the winner of the first phase of the World Innovation Competition in the personalized medicine category. To enable economies of scale, technology transfer is at the heart of these investment and research programs. The regional challenge of technology transfer is to make public research a lever for innovation and value creation for digital companies.
The Aliénor Transfert Agency, an acceleration company serving technology transfer
In 2012, technology transfer acceleration companies (SATT) were established in the country. On a more local scale, saTT Grand Centre ceased operations in 2018 due to poor results. Due to their cost and scale, New Aquitaine has decided to pool the fields of green chemistry, bio-health, transport and humanities within the same place: the Aliénor Transfert Agency. A true industrial ecosystem with more than 45,000 students, 1800 researchers, 65 research laboratories and more than 20 technology platforms, its launch on 1 September 2019 of the Aliénor Transfert Agency must be able to respond to a logic of territory since it includes the University of Limoges, Poitiers, Isae-Ensma, CNRS, THE LEONARDO de Vinci COMUE and the Technopole Grand Poitiers. Its field of intervention thus covers the northern territory of the New Aquitaine Region, with a population of 1.9 million. Its objectives are multiple both in the detection of high value-added projects in research laboratories but also in facilitating the access of companies. Its implementation must therefore be able to create territorial synergies, by pooling collaborations between companies and research but also by promoting links between PhD students and companies.
New Aquitaine, a close asset in the service of technology transfer
The example of the Aliénor Transfert Agency perfectly illustrates the will behind the existing regional system. According to El Mustapha Belgsir, vice-president of the urban community of Grand Poitiers and its technopolis, proximity is a crucial asset in supporting business innovation. With this in mind, New Aquitaine identifies 34 cells and technology transfer platforms to enhance public research. The Adera, a private structure in the form of a taxed association law 1901, has thus set up a “technology transfer cell” system to respond more precisely to the technological needs of companies.
In parallel to the Aliénor Transfert Agency project, La Rochelle University and SATT Aquitaine Transfert announced a partnership in May 2019. Indeed, in the context of the Prime Minister’s decision to allocate 1.5 billion euros under the Future Investment Plan, it is appropriate to develop a business plan allowing collaboration in the management of intellectual property and the transfer of innovations. More broadly, this partnership agreement responds to La Rochelle University’s strategic project CampusInnov, which covers the fields of real estate, entrepreneurship, technology transfer and business development. These various rapprochements thus echo a logic of coherence of innovation at the level of the New Aquitaine region.
Technology transfer acceleration companies aim to facilitate the transfer of technology from public research to companies. A pioneer of the dynamic “New France Industrial”, New Aquitaine has a duale ambition. Indeed, with the launch in February 2014 of the regional program “Factory of the Future, New Aquitaine has expressed its desire to build a territorial marketing strategy in terms of excellence of regional research. However, action guidelines have yet to be reached. It may, for example, be relevant to encourage the pooling of RESEARCH efforts of SMEs, which forms the main economic fabric of the Neo-Aquitaine territory.
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