The University of Nairobi (UoN) has the largest concentration of scholars and researchers in the country and is the centre for Intellectual life, a locus of research activity extending the boundaries of knowledge, a resource for professional development and a key player in the growing global network of scholarship. The University strives to discover practical uses for theoretical knowledge and to speed up the transmission of information to the Kenyan nation and the world. In fostering research and its practical application, the University will continue to be a catalyst for positive intellectual, social, cultural and technological change.
The radical and unstoppable scientific and technological advances of the latter part of the 20th century have ushered in daunting challenges in the appropriation and use of products of human intellect. In particular, there are concerns for the public interest in new products and processes resulting from discoveries or inventions made by researchers in connection with and related to their research activities. Moreover the growing application and use of communications media, educational technology, and computer programs in research raise new and complex problems relating to the proper and equitable distribution of rewards and obligations. The challenge to find fair and equitable ways and means to distribute and reward efforts among the different stakeholders, that is, the inventors or authors, the institution for which they work, outside sponsors and, more important today, the community in which the work is conducted, is real indeed.
Accordingly, research institutions have undergone a profound transition in their attitudes toward and interactions with a variety of external organizations and actors. Policies concerning intellectual property rights, conflicts of interest, and patent, license agreements, to name but a few, have begun to consume enormous amounts of time and thought in these institutions
For the UoN, as for other institutions, the need and concern to properly manage its intellectual property and the intellectual property of others is paramount. Inventions, discoveries, copyrightable works, and other creative works that have the potential to be brought into practical use may be developed by the UoN employees within the scope and in the course of their duties or through the use, by any person, of the UoN resources such as facilities, equipment and funds. In the same vein, the UoN may benefit from using intellectual property of others. It is in light of these realities that the UoN has taken time to examine its role and to reaffirm its commitment to basic principles and proper management of intellectual property.
Thus, the UoN has formulated this Policy to guide its management staff and students, including associates, concerning the development, ownership, management and marketing intellectual property.
It is the intention of the UoN, pursuant to Section 7 of the UoN Act, to provide Intellectual Property Policy regulations and procedures that will encourage the development of inventions, innovations and other intellectual creations for the best interest of the public, the creator, and the research sponsor, if any. These will also permit the timely protection and disclosure of such intellectual property by developing and commercializing it after securing available protection for the creation. The innovation may thus be protected and commercialized before publication or it may be published, as is being protected and commercialized as the occasion demands. The Policy is further intended to protect the interests of all concerned by ensuring that the benefits of such property accrue to the public, to the inventor, to partners and to sponsors of specific research. The protection or rewards may include monetary returns and recognition, as circumstances justify or require.
The mission of the UoN is to be a centre for learning and scholarship; preparing students for academic pursuits, professional development, enhanced personal lives, and responsible global citizenship; extending the frontiers of knowledge through research, creative works, and scholarship; fostering an intellectual culture that bridges theory with practice; contributing to social, economic, and cultural development; and through intellectual products, enhances the quality of life of the people of Kenya and all humanity.
The vision of the UoN is to be world-class University and a community of scholars committed to the promotion of academic achievement and excellence in research as an embodiment of the aspirations of the Kenyan people and the global community.