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Biomed Tech (Berl). 2014 Apr 1;59(2):135-45. doi: 10.1515/bmt-2013-0085.

Implementation of quality management in early stages of research and development projects at a university.


The ultimate objective of university research and development projects is usually to create knowledge, but also to successfully transfer results to industry for subsequent marketing. We hypothesized that the university technology transfer requires efficient measures to improve this important step. Besides good scientific practice, foresighted and industry-specific adapted documentation of research processes in terms of a quality management system might improve the technology transfer. In order to bridge the gap between research institute and cooperating industry, a model project has been accompanied by a project specific amount of quality management. However, such a system had to remain manageable and must not constrain the researchers' creativity. Moreover, topics and research team are strongly interdisciplinary, which entails difficulties regarding communication because of different perspectives and terminology. In parallel to the technical work of the model project, an adaptable quality management system with a quality manual, defined procedures, and forms and documents accompanying the research, development and validation was implemented. After process acquisition and analysis the appropriate amount of management for the model project was identified by a self-developed rating system considering project characteristics like size, innovation, stakeholders, interdisciplinarity, etc. Employees were trained according to their needs. The management was supported and the technical documentation was optimized. Finally, the quality management system has been transferred successfully to further projects.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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