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University of Wisconsin–Madison

Equity Review

The UW–Madison is required to assure that both federal and non-federal rights to inventions are protected.

When an invention disclosure report (IDR) is made, WARF makes an assessment of whether an invention has been achieved. If an invention has been achieved, then the UW–Madison VCRGE Office undertakes a review of the funding sources, material transfers, institutional commitments and other agreements that may have contributed to the invention. This process is called equity review. Because of comingling, it is not always possible to easily determine the nexus between an invention and a single source of funding.

Time requirements for reporting of inventions made using federal research funds are imposed by the federal government. This means inventors have responsibilities to respond in a timely manner to all requests for information during equity review, and that the University has responsibilities to complete the equity review and report the creation of new IP to the federal government within 60 days of receipt of an accepted IDR from WARF. Other third party contracts may have similar time requirements for disclosure of inventions that should be fulfilled.

The equity review process provides opportunities for input from inventors, review by the appropriate Chair, Dean or Director, and a process for appeal of determinations of comingling of different funding sources in the invention.


UW System Administrative Policy 346, Inventions and Patents, Section 6.B. Equity Review and Disposition of Inventions

Section 6.B.I Federally Funded Inventions:

Section 6.B.II Non-Federally Funded Inventions:

Section 6.B.III Unencumbered Inventions:


UW-Madison guidance on equity review: