The Technology Transfer Office of the Biology Centre organized an International conference on knowledge and technology transfer on June 3, 2021, focusing on academic spin-off companies, which garnered many positive responses from the professional public and pushed the knowledge and technology transfer in the Czech Republic ahead a bit. The event took place in a hybrid form, so the conference was attended not only by 110 participants in person, but also by more than 100 online participants.
The conference participants were welcomed by the event moderator Aleš Vlk and the introductory words were given by the director of the Biology Centre prof. Libor Grubhoffer and Deputy Mayor of České Budějovice Ing. Ivo Moravec.
The conference was attended not only by representatives of Czech knowledge transfer offices, but also by representatives of the Ministry of Industry and Trade, Czechinvest, TAČR, ASTP, Transfer, Czech universities, the Academy of Sciences and from abroad representatives of MaxPlanck, Szeged University, CTT Jožef Stefan Institute, Institute of Innovation and Technology, the British Embassy, foreign companies Variolytics GmbH and Orange Quantum Systems.
The importance of spin-off companies within national strategies, the emergence of spin-off companies on academia, foreign experience with the establishment of spin-off companies, and finally a simulation block to verify practical knowledge with the establishment of spin-offs in the Czech legislative framework.
In the afternoon discussion panel, there were representatives of both Western Europe, where university spin-off companies have their established position, and representatives of Central and Eastern Europe, where the support system is still being formed. Panelists from Germany, Great Britain, Slovenia, the Netherlands, Poland and Hungary took part in the discussion.
The conclusions of the conference confirmed that the attitude of researchers and the management of research organizations is improving. However, many national programs or strategies are also changing, which reflect the dynamically changing environment of knowledge transfer in the EU, and the innovation environment is being cultivated. The positive news is that there are no legislative obstacles to the establishment of spin-offs in the Czech Republic. According to the Ministry of Industry and Trade, the development of academic spin-offs would benefit if research organizations had their venture capital. TACR is preparing new programs for establishing a spin-off, either a continuation of GAMA or a new program SIGMA. Another call for feasibility studies is being prepared within TAČR, in cooperation with several other European agencies. Suggestions from the conference will be further developed in the Transfer working groups and the BC Technology Transfer Office will be there.