Intellectual Property Rights of academic staff
At Swedish universities, the so-called “Teacher’s Exemption” for academic staff applies to all research at the University.
This rule is derived from in Act (1949:345) on the Rights to Employee Inventions. The Teacher’s Exemption law prevents universities in Sweden from obtaining the Intellectual Property Rights of employed researchers and inventors who generate Intellectual Property as part of their employement at the University. It is stated as an exemption because private companies typically maintain the intellectual property rights of their employees.
By custom, the “Teacher’s Exemption” for academic staff has come to encompass more than inventions, and KTH applies the Exemption broadly. In practice, this means that a researcher employed at a university, owns the IP rights to their work results unless otherwise agreed.
The above means that the University, in cases where results need to be made available to a collaborative party, must reach a separate agreement with the researcher to grant licenses that enable the collaborative research project to be performed. For the transfer of results for commercial exploitation, the collaborative party will need to enter into a separate agreement with the researcher who owns the IP.