In the News: Campus acknowledges our website as new resource

A new online portal for the UALR Center for Innovation and Commercialization is expected to draw investors seeking to license university research.

The site now offers a list of technologies available for licensing, divided into seven categories – biotechnology, coatings, electronics, energy, engineering, medicine, and nanomaterials. Interested parties can read brief overviews of each technology, plus assessments of the innovations’ potential benefits and applications.

With the new site, the CIC can update the listing as additional technologies become available for licensing, giving potential licensees or sponsors the most up-to-date information on university research.

Having such robust, current content online will allow CIC to engage in “passive” marketing of UALR technologies, said Mildred Holley, director of operations at UALR’s Center for Integrative Nanotechnology Sciences.

“It is critical for UALR to use the internet to promote its available technologies,” Holley said. “Passive web marketing is a common practice in the university community. It helps pull visitors to the university’s tech transfer and commercialization information. Having the Nanotechnology Center’s discoveries on the web may attract partners – that web visitor might be a future licensee or research sponsor willing to invest to further develop existing inventions.”

The College of Business’s Arkansas Small Business and Technology Development Center spearheaded the creation of the new portal, working closely with Holley, Glediana Rexha, director of technology transfer for the center, and Aaron Baker of UALR’s Information Technology Services. Rebecca Van Den Houte, ASBTDC graduate assistant, performed much of the technical work.

Rexha said the portal is important in advertising UALR’s available technologies, but pointed out a less obvious benefit of passive marketing.

“It shows a portfolio and gives credence to the institution,” she said. The portal’s extensive list of UALR technologies underscores the university’s success as a research institution, she said.

CIC’s previous website provided only a brief overview of the office’s services, requiring interested parties to visit in person for more information. “It was really a kind of business card but not a very good one,” said Rexha.

ASBTDC engaged a company last year to evaluate the commercialization and intellectual property potential of 28 new technologies developed by the UALR Nanotechnology Center.

The project resulted in a professional evaluation of the strengths and weaknesses of each invention, a rating to prioritize commercialization and recommendations for advancement. Chief among the recommendations was the need for passive marketing of the technologies online.

“We want to see new companies created and developed through technology transfer and the commercialization of university research,” said Michael Singleton, ASBTDC’s innovation and market research manager. “The portal will assist potential licensees who have an entrepreneurial mindset in learning about the high-caliber research available at UALR.”

Internally, UALR researchers and inventors can use the portal, too. Rexha hopes the new site will eliminate many of the basic questions they previously had to contact CIC to ask. Before beginning the patenting process, they can review their rights, the steps involved in obtaining a patent, estimates of time and other helpful information.

The next phase of the portal’s development will allow campus researchers and inventors to submit their new technologies online. An automated process will take them through each stage and track remaining steps.

CIC heads UALR’s effort to commercialize university research and inventions by providing assistance in intellectual property protection, licensing and investment funding.

ASBTDC provides free consulting and market research services plus affordable training for new and existing innovation-based small businesses. Learn more at

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