Dissertations and Theses @ UNI


Open Access Thesis


Patents -- Iowa; Inventors -- Iowa


Inventors granted patents from 1975 to 1990 in Iowa identified, via a questionnaire, where they perceived their invention on Bright's scale of eight stages of development. Stages were: idea, rationalization (has merit), experimentation, demonstration of prototypes, working model, commercial (market entry), commercial acceptance (sales), and commercial proliferation (other markets). The questions identified factors affecting development. The factors included: resources assisting development, events influencing start-up, sources of money for development, method of manufacturing, experiences with manufacturers, marketing techniques, sales, profit/loss, concerns, patent renewals, and age of patents. Open-ended questions allowed for additional comments.

Commercial acceptance or commercial proliferation was achieved by 46% of 311 persons who responded to the questionnaire. This was higher than the < 2% hypothesis. When compared to stages of development, the factors that associated with success included: inventors marketed their patented invention at trade-shows, income from the inventions totaled more than $500,000, and inventors manufactured (including subcontracting) and marketed their patented invention themselves. The success rate of inventors selling their invention to a marketer occurred with a frequency of only 1%.

Year of Submission


Degree Name

Master of Arts


Department of Industrial Technology

First Advisor

Rex W. Pershing


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Date Original


Object Description

1 PDF file (194 pages)



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