Q & A for resident journalists

Answers to most frequently asked questions such as...

Touch Shanghai

Creative industry, Services for the people's livelihood...

SICIV - Center for Int’l Visitors

The SICIV, located in Xintiandi in Luwan District...

Shanghai, City of Inspiration


Houston (30 seconds version)


View More

Rules on profiting from scientific research

May 8, 2017

The city government has released regulations on the commercialization of scientific research findings, which will take effect from June 1.

The rules specify standards for such findings that include allowing institutes to keep all the profits from related business projects; that more than 70 percent of the profits can be distributed to staff involved in the findings as a reward; and how to calculate the likely net income of the commercialization so as to avoid future disputes.

To provide guidance for scientific institutes as well as to remove regulatory barriers, the authority said the rules were drafted after studying previous commercialization cases concerning the experiences of the city’s universities as well as the bottlenecks they encountered.

The regulation states the institute owning the scientific findings can decide how to commercialize the projects - such as transferring, licensing or investing the findings, without approval from administrative authorities, unless the project involves state secrets or security. The institutes can also decide how to set pricing for projects.

Because commercialization of scientific research findings requires a development outlay and usually involves state-owned assets, some officials in institutes or state-owned companies may be unwilling to promote commercialization for fear they will be held accountable if the project does not succeed.

To encourage such officials to take the initiative, the regulation says as long as “responsible persons” fulfill their duties according to the law and their institutes’ rules, they will not be held accountable if commercialization does not realize the value expected.

The regulation calls on institutes to set up specialized teams responsible for scientific research findings’ commercialization to analyze the application values of the findings for further decision making, as well as applying for, managing and protecting related intellectual property rights.

Rewards and bonuses to staff involved in the projects will not affect the institutes or the state-owned companies’ annual salary cap.

Faculty or researchers are encouraged to work in or set up their own enterprises, while keeping their posts in the institutes, to promote the success of commercialization.