An increased cooperation between universities and industries is seen by many politicians as an ultimate remedy against economic under-development by fostering regional growth in a world in which the know-how content of products is ever increasing. Furthermore, this know-how is increasingly separable from the goods and, thus, can be developed into an Intellectual Property Right (IPR). As we well know, technological development was historically often linked to the machinery in which this specific technology was used, and enterprises tried to keep implicit knowledge within their firms, protecting it against diffusion into economic space. The more that know-how became public, for instance through the development within publicly financed research units, such as universities, the more a general diffusion process became possible. It was in the nineteenth century that nation-states started to found their universities of technology, their royal research institutes, etc. in order to promote technological development. The necessity to protect generally accessible know-how that was privately developed became of strategic importance and, thus, international regulations on trade marks, patents, their licensing, etc. developed.
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