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Best Practices for Inventors

Good Record Keeping

Maintenance of good laboratory records is important. Experiments should be written out and explained in a bound notebook. Data may be maintained in separate folders referenced in the laboratory notebook. Pages of the notebook should be dated and signed regularly. It is best if they are also periodically witnessed, signed and dated by a knowledgeable colleague who is not likely to be named as a co-inventor.

Visit G-40, University of California Patent Program, Appendix E, Suggestions for Invention Record Keeping for more information.

Be Smart About Disclosures

Obviously discussion within a research group is permissible, but discussion with others can be interpreted as public disclosure, including departmental seminars or "enabling" detailed discussions with visitors.  If you have questions, please contact UC Davis InnovationAccess/Technology Transfer Services! The best way to avoid public disclosure is to not discuss your experiments in a manner that others can readily duplicate. If you seek advice from outsiders, then a Confidentiality Agreement may be needed. In any discussions with representatives from companies it is always good practice to have us put a Confidentiality Agreement in place.