The University of South Florida, the University of Central Florida and the University of Florida ranked among the top 25 universities in the world for the number of patents awarded in 2012, above academic powerhouses such as Northwestern, Harvard and Duke. The ranking, by the National Academy of Inventors and the Intellectual Property Owners Association, is based on data from the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office.
Researchers at The University of South Florida received 79 patents and were ranked 15th, the University of Central Florida received 72 and ranked 21st, and the University of Florida received 70 and ranked 22nd, according to the report. Only two other Florida universities made the list of the top 100: Florida State (with 32 patents) ranked 55th and the University of Miami, with 21 patents, at 92nd. The University of California (357 patents), MIT (216) and Stanford (182) were the top three.
The two trade organizations compiled the listing to emphasize the impact university research has on worldwide economic development. "University inventors are the discoverers and creators of new solutions to existing problems, and, as such, are key contributors to the advancement of technology," said Paul R. Sanberg, president of the National Academy of Inventors. “Protection of this intellectual property, through the patenting process, underpins the creation of new industries and employment."