Driving Tomorrow’s Innovations Through Purposeful Partnerships

The Office for External Partnerships establishes, facilitates, and supports mutually beneficial relationships between public and private sector organizations and the University to accelerate basic and translational research and innovation across Duke that will significantly impact society.

For Organizations & Potential Partners

How the Office for External Partnerships helps for-profit, non-profit, and government organizations partner with Duke innovation.

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For Faculty & Research Staff

How the Office for External Partnerships helps faculty and research staff partner with for-profit, non-profit and government organizations.

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Duke’s Approach

Facilitate Access to Duke Faculty and Assets

The Office for External Partnerships (OEP) proactively pursues and supports partnerships between Duke University and any external parties, including but not limited to business, government, and corporate foundations. Such partnerships leverage any University faculty, staff, and students, as well as intellectual property, resources, and other assets to address important problems of interest to the partners.

Engage In Active Business Development

The Office for External Partnerships (OEP) will also engage in active business development seeking strategic corporate partnerships and will strive to involve the broadest possible spectrum of Duke faculty and other assets in such relationships.

Provide Advisory Services and Tactical Funding

On a selective basis, OEP will provide advisory services and tactical funding to Duke teams to facilitate partnership formation.

Convene Relevant Parties

Once interest is expressed by a potential partner or by Duke faculty, OEP then convenes relevant parties to explore, negotiate, and close contractual relationships deemed mutually beneficial and compliant with pertinent regulations and Duke policies and provide project management support.

While faculty, staff, or students can initiate dialogue directly with companies, OEP offers several services when developing and executing on partnerships:

  • Strategic advice to build a comprehensive partnership
  • Research and report on the historical connections between the company and Duke
  • Make contacts with relevant leadership at partner organization
  • Logistical support for arranging meetings, contracting, and negotiation
  • Interfacing with the Office for Translation & Commercialization (OTC) for intellectual property and Office for Research Contracts (ORC) to establish and review partnership terms
  • Project manager support to facilitate development of scope of work, meeting milestones, preparing reports and overseeing budgets

Irrespective of support from OEP, faculty and staff are obliged to utilize Duke contracting processes and inform us of such engagements unless the proposed relationship is unrelated to Duke employment or facilities.

Liaise With Other Duke Administrative Units

Our team also liaises continuously with other Duke administrative units, especially with Development in relation to corporate philanthropy, Translation and Commercialization for licensing and start-ups, and with Student and Alumni Affairs in relation to opportunities for internships and employment.

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Get in Touch

The Office for External Partnerships actively partners with the Office for Translation & Commercialization, industry contacts, Duke schools, institutes, centers, and the Office of Alumni Engagement and Development to cultivate and realize the full spectrum of potential of Duke research, scholarship, and student talent to make a positive impact on society.

Contact the Team