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UBC Reports | Vol. 51 | No. 7 | Jul. 7, 2005

Research that Transforms Our Lives

Why UBC is the best in Canada at translating discoveries into practical, everyday advances

What do Visudyne ®, a world-leading treatment for age-related blindness and Web CT, a web learning tool used by 10 million university students, have in common? They both incorporate breakthrough innovation developed at the University of British Columbia. And they are each compelling examples of UBC’s unusual success at translating research discoveries into real-life uses that benefit millions of people -- a process we examine in this issue of UBC Reports.

Since 1997, UBC research funding has more than doubled to $343 million in 2004. But the hurdles to translating that research into practical advances can be significant. They include applying for patents, licensing technology, attracting venture capital, and organizing and staffing new companies. It’s a process that few faculty researchers could tackle on their own.

That’s where UBC’s University-Industry Liaison Office comes in. Thanks to its success at coming alongside researchers, UBC ranks first among Canadian universities, and 11th in North America, for numbers of U.S. patents granted. In total, UBC has created 117 spin-off companies. Last year, these efforts generated $16 million in technology licensing revenue for UBC. To learn more about the UILO’s technology transfer programs, visit www.uilo.ubc.ca.

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