Revisions to NDA Intellectual Property (IP) Policy – Ownership and Management of IP by the SLCs and the supply chain

The NDA IP Policy is being revised to address the following objectives: 

  • Securing value for money for the NDA and therefore the taxpayer;
  • Fostering the creation of a competitive contracting environment in which the NDA has secure access to all IP needed to enable the SLCs to manage and operate their sites;
  • Ensuring that the NDA has the rights to competitively bid future M&O Contracts and Site Licence Company Agreements;
  • Encouraging the private sector in the supply chain to invest in and deploy innovative technologies and business processes.

 NDA has issued Commercial Guidance to each SLC and agreed revised IP terms in the M&O contracts and SLC Agreement against the following principles: 

  • Management and ownership of supply chain IP to be determined in accordance with revised terms and conditions and new Commercial Guidance;
  • NDA will continue to own IP developed by the SLCs themselves;
  • SLCs will be given more flexibility, within an operating envelope, to agree ownership of “Developed” or “Arising” IP by subcontractors in the performance of their subcontracts, provided rights are licensed back to NDA/the SLC;
  • Access to subcontractors’ “Background IP” to be sought solely to facilitate NDA usage of particular project deliverables only across the NDA estate;
  • NDA continues to own IP which it considers is of “Strategic Interest”, but the list of items that this covers is now very much narrower than previously;
  • NDA cannot and will not adopt a unilateral principle of ceding ownership in every case.  However, the SLCs will be given a mandate to determine the position on a case-by-case basis
  • NDA must have regard to its mission under the Energy Act 2004;
  • New arrangements must provide Value for money (VFM) for NDA and therefore the taxpayer, ie, you and me;
  • SLCs are required to comply with EU and UK procurement rules which limit the scope for negotiation of terms with bidders once ITTs have been issued;

The new processes will be auditable and NDA will be involved in regular meetings with the SLCs to ensure that NDA’s consent to proposed arrangements is given, and to check that the arrangements are working.


IP Policy Briefing Note to SLC Supply Chain