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London School of Economics and Political Science

Provision of research commercialisation and innovation support in the social sciences through a commercialisation partnership.   

Challenge

After successfully securing a Research England Connecting Capability Fund grant (Aspect), the London School of Economics (LSE) commissioned Oxentia to work with them to establish an innovation office specifically for social science research.

Approach

Oxentia worked with LSE to determine what a social science commercialisation support function should look like. It then worked to establish and support the School’s commercialisation systems and innovation activities.

Oxentia conducted a comprehensive review of the School’s ecosystem, policies, and procedures with senior stakeholders. Building on this review, Oxentia designed a model for research commercialisation with the client, tailored to LSE’s institutional mission, context, and research focus.  Oxentia then led the implementation of these processes and procedures within the School.

Key activities included: support to senior leadership team at LSE; management of innovation personnel and projects; due diligence and freedom to operate; market analysis and connections to experts in the market; creating and advising on exploitation plans and routes to market; supporting the spin-out process. Oxentia was key in assisting LSE to develop a new IP policy, recruit personnel for the Innovation Office, upskill new and established staff, and hand over to the new innovation office team the management of the School’s commercialisation projects pipeline.

Throughout the partnership, Oxentia was responsible for developing and promoting opportunities for commercialisation among the School’s academic community. This included the delivery of tailored training sessions as well as working with the Innovation Office to design and deliver the LSE Lean Social Science Launchpad, a commercialisation programme for academics, students, and alumni.

Impact

Working with Oxentia, LSE established a fully functioning innovation office designed specifically to support innovation and commercialisation in the social sciences.  Already a leader in UK academic research, LSE is now equipped to deliver further impact through the translation of social science research into products and services for the wider benefit of society.

As part of our support to LSE, the partnership project manager had a central role in the development and delivery of Aspect’s SUCCESS programme, a pilot accelerator programme for academic entrepreneurs from the social sciences, and subsequently, for the ARC (Aspect Research Commercialisation) Accelerator.

Testimonial from Professor Julia Black, Strategic Director of Innovation, London School of Economics:

“We have worked closely and extensively with Oxentia over the last two years to set in place the infrastructure we need to meet our ambition to commercialise social sciences research insights successfully for the betterment of society.   From a standing start, they have guided and supported us to develop our in-house commercialisation team at LSE, and to develop Aspect, an innovative collaboration between seven universities to promote social sciences research commercialisation.   In both initiatives, their expert guidance, dedicated teams and superb project management have been invaluable.  We now operate a fully-functioning and active commercialisation service within the School, and Aspect has grown to include 10 associate members.”

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