Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science

First Advisor

Richard Franza, PhD


In the wake of the defense drawdown and end of the Cold War, government laboratories are facing a changing mission. It is not only to maintain technology superiority, but also to promote commercialization of their technologies. Although Congress has tried to facilitate technology transfer from the government to the private sector, the transfer process has been inconsistent. The need for assistance has initiated the use of third parties or intermediaries in the technology transfer process. This thesis evaluates the utility of a third party in the technology transfer process. An examination of Wright Technology Network (WTN), a third party, is used to form a case study of its value added to Wright Laboratory (WL) in striving to meet WL's mission. Interviews with employees at WTN and WL are used to obtain the data for this case study. The key findings of this research suggest recommendations that can be applied to understand the utility of third parties. Some key findings found include: Third parties assist firms in targeting and defining a technology problem or interest and third parties facilitate the transfer process through their ties with industry. Opportunities for additional research in this area are also offered.

AFIT Designator


DTIC Accession Number



Presented to the Faculty of the Graduate School of Logistics and Acquisition Management of the Air Force Institute of Technology