Submit Your Invention Disclosure
Start by logging into our Inventor Portal and picking the appropriate disclosure form:
- Invention Disclosure Form - available via portal link on our Forms page.
- Software Disclosure Form (Example: source code) - available via portal link on our Forms page.
- Copyright Disclosure Form (Example: artistic or literary work) - available via portal link on our Forms page.
Fill in the required form fields as well as all other relevant ones to add information.
For questions regarding which disclosure form to complete for software (invention vs. software), please read FAQs for Software and Other Copyrightable Works and the Inventor Portal FAQs or contact us at INVODisclosure@northwestern.edu.
Parts of a disclosure form
- Invention title
- Inventors: Enter all inventors' names, as well as the inventors' current school and department affiliation.
Not to be confused with authorship, inventorship applies to everyone who contributed to the conception of an idea. See What is Inventorship? for a full definition of inventorship and to understand why identifying all inventors is critical.
- Sources of funds: List all funding sources and grant numbers, which must be accurate. Include subcontract information if applicable.
- Marketing abstract: Describe your invention, as well as its relevance, applications and advantages in a less technical manner.
- Description of invention: Provide a technical description that will be used by the Intellectual Property team and outside counsel to understand what makes your invention distinct from other inventions.
- Public disclosures: List all disclosures (including journal articles, conference abstracts, oral and poster presentations, disclosures to industry and grant proposals) and their dates.
- Discovery information: Provide details of your discovery, including when, where and how it was conceived and documented.
- Prior art: List any other inventions that are similar to yours. This will help our team differentiate yours from others in your field.
- Commercialization insights: Describe the problem or unmet need that your invention solves or addresses, as well as potential licenses. This will help develop a commercialization plan for the technology.
- Inventor information: Provide complete information on each inventor, including address and phone numbers, citizenship and employee ID number. Leaving these fields incomplete will delay form processing.
The completed and signed form (electronic signatures are accepted) should be sent via email to email@example.com.