Intellectual Property Disclosure Information

What is an Intellectual Property disclosure

An Intellectual Property disclosure is the official written notice of an innovation. It is the first step in protecting and advancing intellectual property. Innovations may be processes, guidelines, methods, machines, articles of manufacture, devices, software, chemicals and compositions of matter. 

Determining inventorship for a patent application/patent

Determining inventorship for a patent application/patent can be a very difficult and time consuming process.  For that reason, the Office of Tech Transfer and Commercialization will assess inventorship associated with each Intellectual Property disclosure form on a case-by-case basis.

The following points should help in an inventorship determination:


  • A person who conceives the subject matter of at least one claim of the patent.
  • Two or more persons who collaborate to produce the invention through aggregate efforts.


  • Someone whose only contribution is reducing an invention to practice by exercising ordinary skill in the art.
  • A technician who simply performs experiments or assembles the invention.
  • The supervisor or department manager of the person who conceived the invention.
  • Someone whose only contribution is an obvious element to the invention.
  • Someone whose only contribution is participation in consultations about the invention before or after conception of the invention.
  • A person who only conceives of the result to be obtained but not the idea of how to achieve it.
  • A person who only discovers the problem (unless he contributes to the solution).
  • A person who merely provides a suggestion or improvement but who does not work to fit the suggestion or improvement into the invention.
  • A second inventor of the subject matter of the invention who did not collaborate with a first inventor of the subject matter of the invention.
Why should you disclose an innovation

The disclosure begins the process of protecting the intellectual property, and finding a path to impact lives. Proceeds from technologies in the market are distributed back to the inventors and their colleges, promoting investment in continued research activities.  Also, many funding agencies, including the federal government, require disclosure of innovations developed with those funds.

When should you disclose an innovation

Timing is a crucial factor when submitting a disclosure – an innovation should be disclosed at least eight weeks prior to sharing information about this discovery publicly. This timeframe allows for an in-depth evaluation process to be completed and ensures enough time for actions to be taken to protect both U.S. and foreign rights. In the event that you cannot submit an innovation disclosure at least eight weeks prior to a public disclosure, please contact us directly.

A public disclosure is any non-confidential oral or written communication to people outside the university that provides enough information to reveal the existence of the innovation and enable a person having ordinary skill in the art to reproduce the innovation. Examples of public disclosures include: a journal article; conference proceedings or abstracts; thesis publication or defense; federally-funded grant applications upon notice of award; publicly distributed meeting notes; or discussions with third parties. When in doubt, contact us to help guide you to ensure the technology is protected.

How should you disclose an innovation

All innovation disclosures should be made through our initial Intellectual Property disclosure form or contacting our office at 316-978-6950 for assistance.

Information you need to disclose 
  • Title
  • Explanation the of the Idea
  • How does this solution advance the technology?
  • Uniqueness -The solution has to be unique and discerning from others. How is this idea unique?
  • Ease of Use/Utility: How is this innovation useful? Who will it benefit? Is it (easily) reproducible?
  • Provide technical descriptions, drawings, etc. 
  • Provide Contributors who participated in the innovation
  • Include any funding or sponsored research information(Who is funding, Grant Number, etc.)
What happens after submitting
Someone from the Tech Transfer and Commercialization office will reach out to you for further discussions and to plan next steps.
Intellectual Property Policy and Institutional Procedures
For information on Intellectual Property Policy and Institutional Procedures please see WSU Policy 9.10.