nep-ipr New Economics Papers
on Intellectual Property Rights
Issue of 2013‒05‒22
five papers chosen by
Giovanni Ramello
Universita' Amedeo Avogadro

  1. On the Origins of the Worldwide Surge in Patenting: An Industry Perspective on the R&D-Patent Relationship By Jérôme Danguy; Gaétan de Rassenfosse; Bruno van Pottelsberghe de la Potterie
  2. Patents and Cumulative Innovation: Causal Evidence from the Courts By Alberto Galasso; Mark Schankerman
  3. Features of IP rights enforcement in Korea and China By Nomura, Takashi; Okada, Saori; Yoshizaki, Takeshi
  4. Intellectual Property Rights and the Future of Universal Service Obligations in Communications By Christian Jaag
  5. The Promise of the Science Commons and the Tragedy of Intellectual Property Rights : The University’s IPR Policy in Perspective By Niceto S. Poblador

  1. By: Jérôme Danguy (Solvay Brussels School of Economics and Management, iCite and ECARES, Université libre de Bruxelles); Gaétan de Rassenfosse (Melbourne Institute of Applied Economic and Social Research, The University of Melbourne; Intellectual Property Research Institute of Australia, The University of Melbourne); Bruno van Pottelsberghe de la Potterie (Solvay Brussels School of Economics and Management, iCite and ECARES, Université libre de Bruxelles)
    Abstract: This paper decomposes the R&D-patent relationship at the industry level to shed light on the sources of the worldwide surge in patent applications. The empirical analysis is based on a unique dataset that includes 5 patent indicators computed for 18 industries in 19 countries covering the period from 1987 to 2005. The analysis shows that variations in patent applications reflect not only variations in research productivity but also variations in the appropriability and filing strategies adopted by firms. The results also suggest that the patent explosion observed in several patent offices can be attributed to the greater globalization of intellectual property rights rather than to a surge in research productivity.
    Keywords: Appropriability, complexity, patent explosion, propensity to patent, research productivity, strategic patenting
    JEL: O30 O34 O38
    Date: 2013–04
  2. By: Alberto Galasso; Mark Schankerman
    Abstract: Cumulative innovation is central to economic growth. Do patent rights facilitate or impede such follow-on innovation? This paper studies the effect of removing patent protection through court invalidation on the subsequent research related to the focal patent, as measured by later citations. We exploit random allocation of judges at the U.S. Court of Appeal for the Federal Circuit to control for the endogeneity of patent invalidation. We find that patent invalidation leads to a 50 percent increase in subsequent citations to the focal patent, on average, but the impact is highly heterogeneous. Patent rights appear to block follow-on innovation only in the technology fields of computers, electronics and medical instruments. Moreover, the effect is entirely driven by invalidation of patents owned by large patentees that triggers entry of small innovators, suggesting that patents may impede the 'democratization' of innovation.
    Keywords: patent rights, cumulative innovation, economics of innovation
    JEL: O33 O34 K41
    Date: 2013–04
  3. By: Nomura, Takashi; Okada, Saori; Yoshizaki, Takeshi
    Abstract: This report examines recent updates to the regulation and enforcement of intellectual property (IP) rights in Korea and China, in particular patent rights including invention, utility, and design rights. This paper also discusses some features and issues of the actual IP enforcement situation in those countries in comparison with Japan.
    Keywords: East Asia, South Korea, China, Intellectual property, Patents, Industrial property law, Copyrights, IP enforcement, Korea
    JEL: K33 K41 K42
    Date: 2013–04
  4. By: Christian Jaag
    Abstract: Network industries are traditionally strongly influenced by sector-specific regulation; especially universal service obligations (USO) play an important role. In these sectors, USO impact market forces by shaping competition asymmetrically. They also interfere with other regulations such as intellectual property laws which are of increasing importance in these industries. This interaction has recently become of interest in the postal sector due to its recent convergence with telecommunications and the emergence of innovative services at the interface of the two sectors. In free markets, the design of intellectual property right trades off investment incentives against market distortions due to (temporary) exclusive rights. USO distort competition and thereby affect the optimal solution of this trade-off. The paper discusses various aspects of the influence of patents on universal service provision. It also illustrates these effects by means of a simple model of an innovation race under asymmetric regulation and with forced licensing to derive regulatory and policy implications to safeguard a cost-effective and consumer-oriented provision of universal services.
    Keywords: Universal service obligation, Communications, Intellectual Property
    JEL: L51 O34
    Date: 2013–05
  5. By: Niceto S. Poblador (University of the Philippines Mindanao)
    Abstract: The title of this essay is a play of words on “The Tragedy of the Commons,” the title of the landmark paper by Garrett Hardin which appeared in Science in 1968. After a long period of dormancy, the concept was resuscitated by Elinor Ostrom in 1990 in a book which gained her the Nobel Prize in Economics in 2011. Science Commons is one of an increasing number of academic and scientific advocacy groups that seek to promote open access to published works and data for the purpose of capturing the enormous potential value from the vast numbers of researches being turned out by individuals, businesses, universities and research institutions all over the world ( ). By commons, Hardin and Ostrom meant communally owned and used resources such as grazing lands, forest resources, mineral resources and so on the unmitigated use of which lead to their eventual exhaustion or destruction. By contrast, the ‘commons’ in science commons refers to knowledge and information, resources that follow a totally different economic logic from those that apply to physical resources. Property rights and other governance mechanisms that apply to one do not necessarily apply to the other.
    Date: 2012–08

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