Inventors' Corner: U.S. Patent #7,516,142 -- System, Method and Program Product for Optimizing a Research and Grant Portfolio

This invention describes a method, system, and program that assists academic researchers with tracking available grants, identifying potential collaborators and their skills, and locating available equipment and other materials. The system also matches up the people, projects and resources in an ordered and disciplined process. In addition, the patented technique can help university researchers properly respond to requests for grant proposals and to efficiently submit grant proposals.

Scientists from the University of Rhode Island (URI) and IBM Researchers are currently developing a solution based on Patent #7516142 that will enable researchers in the school's pharmacy school to efficiently find the resources they need to more effectively plan, manage and measure the progress of their research projects. Under the collaboration, IBM and URI are working on a tool that combines IBM's data analytics, social networking, and optimization software with URI's knowledge of the academic research experience to discover and capitalize on academic research opportunities.

The researchers are using IBM technology to scour the Internet and other networks for useful data from research publications, grant awards, term papers, etc. and storing in a data warehouse with the URI's data, such as student transcripts, academic expert details and papers, grant info, etc. Next, IBM's analytics software will analyze the content, identify potential projects and uncover available resources and IBM optimization software will recommend connections between open grants and available resources. Finally, IBM social networking software will provide an interface and forum for interested researchers to find and share information about the available projects, as well as their areas of expertise and interest.

U.S. Patent #7,516,142 was issued to inventors Robert Friedlander, Anwer Khan, and James Kraemer.