To help kickstart Digital Repository @ Iowa State University, Harrison W. Inefuku, Iowa State’s Digital Repository Coordinator, solicited faculty vitas from across the campus. Harrison soon found himself with a large number of patents and published patent applications from the Agriculture & Biosystems Engineering department and the Food Science & Human Nutrition department, two departments that were especially excited to contribute their work to the IR.
Through the Iowa State University Research Foundation, Inc. (ISURF) and the Office of Intellectual Property and Technology Transfer (OIPTT), Iowa State maintains a database of Iowa State patent material. These two centers work together to “facilitate and enhance the inventive and creative works of Iowa State University’s employees and students, and to transfer these works for the benefit of society.” Their database only keeps the information on active patent and patent applications. Expired patents are removed from the database. The original copy of the expired patent documents are delivered to the Iowa State University Library, where Harrison has found a home for the entire collection of these important intellectual contributions to the academy in Digital Repository @ Iowa State University.
Harrison works with ISURF and OIPITT to methodically capture and showcase patents and patent applications. “As descriptions of inventions, patents are a great way of capturing the research being conducted on campus, and due to the nature of the patent granting process, they demonstrate the originality and creativity of our scholars,” Harrison states.