IP Policy

1. Introduction

This Policy sets out the general principles that the Compound Semiconductor Applications Catapult (CSA Catapult or CSAC) will follow in relation to the management of intellectual property (IP) within our business. This policy is intended to be a tool for facilitating client and partner engagements, managing expectations and increasing successful collaborations.

This policy represents CSA Catapult’s default positions for ownership and licensing of IP. CSA Catapult may agree to deviate from these default positions if such deviation is in line with CSA Catapult’s overall objectives. Any proposed deviation will be subject to approval by CSA Catapult’s Leadership Team.

2. CSA Catapult overall objectives

The IP arrangements between CSA Catapult and our clients and partners aim to uphold the Catapult’s overall objectives, i.e. facilitating the development, identification, protection and commercialisation of new technologies, helping businesses to grow by benefiting from UK research, and hence enhancing UK growth in the compound semiconductor industry. In pursuance of these objectives, the Catapult will act in accordance with the following principles:


  • to act with fairness and integrity when dealing with CSA Catapult IP and third-party IP;
  • to manage IP in a professional and transparent manner that encourages collaboration;
  • to ensure any third-party IP in CSA Catapult’s possession is appropriately handled and protected;
  • to promote the sharing and development of knowledge and technology generated in CSA Catapult and with our partners (contracts permitting) for the overall benefit of industry, including promoting freedom to operate as much as possible;
  • to increase the technical capability of CSA Catapult to ensure we are in the best position possible to achieve our objectives;
  • to establish and maintain CSA Catapult’s approach to protecting and utilising CSA Catapult IP, including through commercialisation where appropriate; and
  • to ensure compliance with CSA Catapult’s legal and contractual obligations, including those arising from our grant funding.


CSA Catapult benefits through the increased skills, capability, know-how and experience that our contribution brings to the compound semiconductor industry, and our business model does not depend on income from IP rights to finance our activities.

3. Default IP arrangements for different CSA Catapult activities

CSA Catapult’s activities are generally divided into three categories:

  • Activities funded internally by CSA Catapult, whether through core grant or commercial reserves;
  • Collaborative R&D activities funded by an external party (customer or public authority funder); and
  • Commercial R&D activities provided to and funded by CSA Catapult’s customers.

The default positions for ownership and use of Background IP (BIP) and Foreground IP (FIP) for each of these activities is set out in the following table.

A table with three columns titled (1) Projects funded internally by CSAC, (2) Collaborative projects funded by external parties, (3) Commercial R&D activities funded by CSAC customers. Each row discusses FIP ownership, FIP use rights, and related policies. - CSA Catapult

4. Joint ownership

Joint ownership of FIP generated through CSA Catapult’s activities is generally not appropriate for the Catapult. As a result, where possible any jointly-created FIP should be owned by one party outright, with appropriate licenses and/or revenue sharing arrangements agreed with the other co-creators as required. Where this is not possible, the joint creators of such FIP may own that FIP jointly and each joint owner may use that FIP provided they do so in accordance with the other joint owners’ rights, which may involve revenue sharing arrangements as required.

CSA Catapult does not favour situations where one joint owner is entitled to use jointly-owned IP without any recourse or compensation being afforded to the other joint owner(s), as to do so would result in the other joint owners not being rewarded for their contributions. This may also have a Subsidy Control impact.

5. IP management

CSA Catapult takes management of IP very seriously and will implement processes and procedures to ensure robust IP management within CSA Catapult’s business, including:

  • Background IP – CSA Catapult will implement and maintain internal procedures and controls to ensure that any BIP that is contributed to CSA Catapult’s projects is appropriately recorded and protected.
  • Foreground IP – CSA Catapult will record FIP arising from CSAC activities and will review options for protection and use of any CSAC-owned FIP to ensure it is applied for the benefit of industry in line with CSA Catapult’s overall objectives.