NIH Licensing Forum: Negotiating Tech Transfer Agreements in a Pandemic

April 21, 2021

NIH Licensing Forum: Negotiating Tech Transfer Agreements in a Pandemic

For this week's Tuesday Licensing Forum, we will have a special presentation from the Reid Adler, JD, Founding Director for the NIH Office of Technology Transfer.

Meeting number (access code): 623 329 789
Meeting password: OTTConA
Join by phone: 1-650-479-3208

Abstract: We're coming out of a pandemic and into a society that seems polarized, even about science and the fruits of technology transfer, such as COVID-19 vaccines. For many of us, binging on video calls and staying productive has been a challenge in managing stress. This new normal would not have been believable a year ago! Still, we've all found ways to adapt and be successful. My own negotiations toolbox has a new compartment for "self care". Also, I set aside more time in meetings, even just a few minutes, for small talk. And I work harder at finding compromises, whether they're needed or not. My current goals include making authentic connections and modeling caring behaviors. In this session, we're looking forward to sharing our mutual experiences and offering some best practices for negotiating agreements.

Reid has been involved with innovation management in the life sciences field for over 35 years, including the development of programs and policies for various types of organizations, negotiation of complex technology transactions and the strategic management of intellectual property assets. His career includes experience as a senior partner of two international law firms, Morrison & Foerster and Morgan Lewis, as well as general counsel to the pioneering J. Craig Venter Institute for genomics. He has also consulted with several multinational pharmaceutical companies on product exclusivity and for the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations on legal and business development aspects of vaccines.

Reid was the founding director of the NIH Office of Technology Transfer, where he recruited a team of over 40 people involved in the translation of research projects into health care products. He played a key role at NIH in developing policies and model agreements, research integrity guidelines and the Uniform Biological Material Transfer Agreement, currently used by hundreds of organizations worldwide. Most recently, Reid launched a website to provide courses and training resources for innovation management at ( His most popular course, "How to Have Safe and Effective Confidential Business Conversations" now includes a special module on "Best Practices for Negotiating in a Pandemic." (Coupons for free access are available.)

Reid holds a JD from the George Washington University Law School. Following law school, he clerked for Judge Giles Rich at the US Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit. After that, he was a fellow at the Max Planck Institute for Foreign and International Patent, Copyright and Competition Law in Munich, Germany. Reid has testified before Congress on technology transfer policy, published numerous articles, and has taught courses in Innovation Management, Strategic Planning, Technology Transfer, and Legal Aspects of Biotechnology for The Johns Hopkins University, George Washington University Law School, DePaul University Law School and the FAES Graduate School at NIH. Reid also has served on the boards of several community nonprofit organizations involved with the fine arts and with middle and high-school education.