If you are a researcher we recommend you check the following list of frequently asked questions about the protection of research results. If you have any further questions, contact us directly:


Liaison officer for  the Innovation Area: Pedro Fernández Nohales
Contact: pfernandez@incliva.esTelephone: 961 97 34 51. Extension: 436054  


  1. Why protect my results?

Because this is how you can be sure that you will be recognized as their author. Also, if you want to transfer them to third parties for exploitation (for example, a company which will develop them into a commercial product), these parties will only be interested in negotiating with you if they know your group are the exclusive owners of these results.


  1. How do I Know if my results are worth protecting?

If you have any idea, result, or invention that you think may have a commercial interest, the best thing to do is contact us so we can carefully analyze it together.


  1. What ways are there to protect my results?

There are several Intellectual Property and Industrial Property mechanisms; which one to use will depend on the type of results and what we want to do with them later.

Intellectual Property patents (author rights, as a copyright) protects the author’s originality for any type of work (literature, film, music, science, art, etc.) or software.

However, Industrial Property patents protect property rights with real and exclusive rights to certain creations. Industrial Property patent titles are commercial trademarks, industrial designs, useful models, and the patents.

In addition, trade secret, know-how, and confidential information patents also exist, which provide protection while maintaining the contents of the patent a secret, something that is otherwise difficult to guarantee.


  1. What is a patent?

It is a title awarded by the state for a certain period of time with respect to a particular invention. The patent title holder has the exclusive right to prevent others from possessing, using, selling, or manufacturing the patented invention in the named territory during the patent’s validity period.


  1.  What can be patent?

Any invention of a technical nature that is new, industrially applicable, and which required an intellectual effort by the inventor.

Ideas, scientific theories, mathematical methods and formulas, business plans, or ways of presenting information are not patentable.


  1. Can I disclose my results if I patent them?

Yes but you have to respect the order: "Protect, Publish, Transfer". First the invention is protected, i.e. the patent application is made to the appropriate office. This ensures that we have the priority for the invention and then we can disclose its details, in the form of scientific publications, at conferences, in lectures, etc. It is important not to disclose ANY information before the patent application. If we do, our invention is no longer new, and therefore is not patentable.

Any research result that has already been published cannot be patented later because it will have lost its novelty.


  1. How long does a patent?

    In general, 20 years from the date of the application. 


  1. What geographic area does my patent protect?

Patents are granted by states. Thus, a patent only provides protection in the state in which it was granted. However, broadly speaking, there are some ways to simplify patent handling in several countries at once, such as a European application (virtually all countries in Europe) and the PCT (142 countries).


  1. If I patent my invention, can I use or market it?

You wouldn’t need to. This would prevent others from using your invention, however, the patent would not necessarily guarantee that you could use your invention either. To use your invention you might need to use another previous invention which may already be patented by a third party.


  1. What is the difference between the inventor and patent holder?

The inventor is the author of the invention. This is the person who did the research that led to the invention which was subsequently patented. But, the inventor does not necessarily have to be the owner of the patent. The owner of the patent is its title holder.

For example, for an invention created within INCLIVA, the inventor would be the researcher or researchers who carried out the R&D, but if the invention is patented, INCLIVA and other institutions or companies which participated in the R&D of the project would be the patent owners.


  1. Do I receive financial remuneration for patenting?

Not for patenting in itself, but if the patent is transferred to a third party, the inventors will have rights to it equating at least a third of the revenue generated by the exploitation of the patented idea.