Chapter 3 Establishing a framework for testing international cooperation

The feasibility study was conducted under conditions which were agreed to by the International Steering Committee, before consortia were invited to submit test case proposals.

Three documents established the framework for collaboration. These were:

The second and third of these were proposed by the Technical and Intellectual Property Rights Committees, respectively, and were approved by the Steering Committee.

3.1 Modalities

The modalities applying to test cases were defined as first, the principles applicable to interactions between government agencies and Participants and second, the activities and frameworks for action based on those principles which were seen as likely to emerge during the study.

The guidelines for test case modalities were proposed at the first meeting of the International Steering Committee (ISC) and finalised at the second meeting prior to commencement of the test cases. Following is a summary of the agreed provisions.

Consortia in test cases shall contain legal entities, called partners, from at least three different Participants' territories. Entities should be accountable for their behaviour in legal and financial terms and could include companies, universities, government institutions and individuals.

The test cases shall not be open to partners from outside the Participants' territories.

Each Participant shall have at least one involvement in a test case.

Each test case must have significant industrial participation and must aim to measurably improve the performance of manufacturing industry. A consortium is a horizontal or vertical cooperative arrangement composed of interested entities as defined above, formed to conduct research and development. The consortium is structurally decentralised with partners drawn from any part of the participating regions. Test case research and development activities, too, should be as decentralised as possible. The set of test cases should address as many phases of the innovation process (e.g. basic research, applied research, prototyping, commercial development, deployment, etc.) as possible. This means that phases of test cases which are financed, or partially financed, with public money may not go beyond the pre-competitive stage of research and development. Whilst existing international projects may be used as the basis for test cases it is not excluded that entirely new proposals may be put forward for consideration. Existing domestic projects may also be used as the basis for test cases if they can be modified so as to meet the criteria for approval. The partners will show how the contributions to, and the benefits from, participation are equitable and balanced. To this end, with contributions having been identified by type (including in-kind contributions such as equipment, facilities, personnel, documentation, techniques and intellectual property) and value for each partner and group, this information shall be displayed via a matrix or some other appropriate means, so as to clearly show the contribution of each group relative to others in a project.

3.2 Technical themes

The range of technical issues involved were an important part of the basis of selection of particular projects as test cases within the overall feasibility study.

Technical considerations were based on the broad principles set out in the Terms of Reference. Guidelines adopted at the second meeting of the ISC contained four specific principles. These were:

In order to assist and encourage applicants in putting forward proposals, the ITC identified, at its first meeting, six general areas which were designated as technical themes. These themes included: To deepen the understanding by applicants of the scope of each theme, the Committee proposed groups of key words in order to amplify and explain the range of meanings of each theme (see Box). This was in keeping with the objective implied in the Terms of Reference of allowing potential partners to appreciate the scope available to them when compiling a project bid.
Technical Themes Identified for the IMS Test Case Feasibility Study

  Technical Themes                    Key Words

  1 Enterprise integration            modelling
                                      system architecture
                                      network systems
                                      database technologies
                                      product design technologies
                                      product data exchange technologies

  2 Global manufacturing              concurrent engineering
                                      organisational and economic aspects
                                      supplier and distribution management

  3 System component technologies     autonomous systems
                                      design and simulation
                                      sensor and information fusion

  4 Clean manufacturing               environmentally safe
                                      energy conservation

  5 Human and organisational aspects  human-oriented production systems
                                      human-machine interaction
                                      internal and external team working

  6 Advanced materials processing     machining
                                      complex processing
                                      process modelling and simulation

The technical themes for test cases were approved at the second meeting of the International Steering Committee (ISC) where it was noted that the themes were for test cases only and that flexibility should be maintained on the selection of technical themes for future programs. At the second meeting of the ITC, it was agreed that the six themes provide reasonable scope for the test cases to be carried out during the feasibility study.

3.3 Intellectual property rights

The initial task of the International Intellectual Property Rights Committee (IIPRC) was to establish Intellectual Property Rights (IPR) Guidelines for test cases under the IMS feasibility study.

IPR guidelines for research and development were developed at the first meeting of the IIPRC in Tokyo in June 1992 and refined at the second meeting in Brussels in July. In view of the short time available, the Committee aimed for a minimum set of IPR guidelines for the test cases. It was understood that these guidelines would not necessarily provide a precedent for IPR rules for a future IMS program. However, the experience that would be gained in their use would provide valuable input.

Although the IPR Guidelines were not to be seen as immutable, it was the understanding and expectation of the IIPRC that they would be adhered to by the partners in each of the test cases. This was confirmed by the ISC.

Broadly, the IPR Guidelines for test cases were intended to:

The IPR Guidelines introduced a set of defined terms and addressed the following issues arising from the test cases: The IPR Guidelines for test cases are included as an annex to this report (Annex V).

In summary, the Guidelines divide intellectual property rights into two classes: those which existed prior to the commencement of the project (background rights) and those which are created by virtue of the project (foreground rights). It is proposed that foreground intellectual property should be owned by the party or parties generating it and licensed on a royalty-free basis to other partners in the same project for research and development and commercial exploitation.

Background rights are to be licensed on normal commercial conditions to parties where the licensing of those rights is necessary for the commercial exploitation of any foreground intellectual property rights generated in the project. It is thus intended that parties will not be permitted to use their background intellectual property rights to block fellow parties from using foreground intellectual property generated in the project. The parties were left to agree amongst themselves about conditions for licensing background rights for research and development purposes.

Next Section, Contents, IMS Page, KSI Page 28-Aug-94