Securing a partnership in a Marie Curie project

Helpline / Success Story

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The University Rovira i Virgili (URV) based in Tarragona, Spain, has applied as Host Organisation for an International Outgoing Fellowship in 2012. This Marie Curie Action, funded under the Seventh Framework Programme (FP7), supports individual international mobility projects for experienced researchers, who have the opportunity within the project to be trained and to acquire knowledge in a high-level organisation outside the European Union.

This particular project called PhotoCap focuses on the encapsulation process, that is, the capture of a compound into a coating material, which is currently the best solution available on the market for the delivery of dedicated components/materials in different applications such as: food ingredients, perfumes, drugs, dyes, acids, pesticides and herbicides, among others. The experienced researcher is particularly engaged in developing and exploring encapsulation and triggering their release using as a model non-toxic substances such as perfumes under mild, consumer-relevant irradiation conditions.

The outgoing phase of the project was designed to last two years in the United States of America at Procter & Gamble. Therefore URV engaged in negotiations with Procter & Gamble for the establishment of a partnership agreement to govern their relationship and the experienced researcher's rights and obligations. As the Coordinator of the project, URV was well aware of the importance of being familiar with the intellectual property rules established in the grant agreement and drafting the partnership in compliance with those regulations.

The URV therefore contacted the European IPR Helpdesk to seek information about the intellectual property rules that it had to consider and suggestions on the partnership agreement under negotiation. With this information, URV was hoping to ease negotiations and to more easily reach a common agreement with its American partner. According to Dr. Giamberini, the staff member of URV who contacted the Helpline, the reply received to her email was “clear and practical” and definitely “helped clarifying how to perform the negotiation with the American partner”.

With the assistance of the European IPR Helpdesk, Dr. Giamberini was able to “drive the agreement on clear and correct basis”, enabling the signature of the partnership agreement shortly thereafter. The project is currently in the implementation phase, but Dr. Giamberini expects to “contact the Helpline again in the future, in case of doubts or difficulties during a negotiation”.