Open Innovation Challenges in the Automotive Industry - Notes on Opportunities and Possible Legal Solutions
Thomás Prete, Legal Counsel, FPT Powertrain, Brazil
The concept of Open Innovation is fairly new to the automotive sector. However, recent trends show that auto makers are becoming increasingly aware of the fact that Academia, inventors, scientific institutes and even the general public may offer interesting and unique opportunities for smart, quick, low-cost product and process development efforts. This article discusses the role of corporate legal counsel as material in balancing necessary permeable boundaries with real concerns on intellectual property protection. The author presents possibilities by conceiving an “Open Innovation-friendly” legal environment: one that allows projects and ideas to flourish without unnecessary legal hindrances, stressing strong internal multidisciplinary work. The article also calls in-house counsel to understand the realm of technologies involved, and presents tools to manage Open Innovation such as the setting forth of clear legal standards, sound intellectual property policies and well balanced cooperation agreements with third parties, aiming at implementation and steady practice of Open Innovation in the company.
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