nep-ipr New Economics Papers
on Intellectual Property Rights
Issue of 2014‒07‒05
nine papers chosen by
Giovanni Ramello
Universita' del Piemonte Orientale Amedeo Avogadro

  1. Patent litigants, patent quality, and software: lessons from the smartphone wars By Ronald A. Cass
  2. Conflict Resolution, Public Goods and Patent Thickets By Dietmar Harhoff; Georg von Graevenitz; Stefan Wagner
  3. Propensity to patent, R&D and market competition : dynamic spillovers of innovation leaders and followers By Szabolcs Blazsek; Álvaro Escribano
  4. Innovation in the Service Sector and the Role of Patents and Trade Secrets By Masayuki Morikawa
  5. The 1883 convention and the impossible unification of industrial property By Gabriel Galvez-Behar
  6. An Economic Analysis of Deferred Examination System: Evidence from Policy Reforms in Japan By Yamauchi, Isamu; Nagaoka, Sadao
  7. Effectiveness of Intellectual Property Regimes: 2006-2011 By Noemí Pulido Pavón; Luis Palma Martos
  8. Selected quantitative studies of patents in standards By Bekkers, Rudi; Baron, Justus; Martinelli, Arianna; Ménière, Yann; Nomaler, Önder; Pohlmann, Tim
  9. What Drives Academic Data Sharing? By Benedikt Fecher; Sascha Friesike; Marcel Hebing

  1. By: Ronald A. Cass
    Abstract: Commentators, public officials, and scholars have sounded alarms over the smartphone patent wars — hundreds of cases asserting infringement of patents by makers of smartphones and tablet computers—often suggesting broad, categorical “fixes” to problems this litigation reveals. In general, these recommendations sweep too broadly, throwing out good claims as well as bad and needed remedies as well as questionable ones. However, calls for attention along two margins promise improvements. One factor, the identity of the enterprise asserting patent rights, already is being used by courts in considering appropriate patent infringement remedies but its use needs to be refined. The other factor, patent quality—especially in software patents, where the existence of parallel schemes of intellectual property protection exacerbates quality problems—is even more critical to the way the system operates. Addressing the patent quality issue (which is distinct from patent clarity or patent notice) can do more than other reforms to reduce costs without reducing innovation incentives.
    Date: 2014–06
  2. By: Dietmar Harhoff; Georg von Graevenitz; Stefan Wagner
    Abstract: Post-grant validity challenges at patent offices rely on the private initiative of third parties to correct mistakes made by patent offices. We hypothesize that incentives to bring post-grant validity challenges are reduced when many firms benefit from revocation of a patent and when firms are caught up in patent thickets. Using data on opposition against patents at the European Patent Office we show that opposition decreases in fields in which many others profit from patent revocations. Moreover, in fields with a large number of mutually blocking patents the incidence of opposition is sharply reduced, particularly among large firms and firms that are caught up directly in patent thickets. These findings indicate that post-grant patent review may not constitute an effective correction device for erroneous patent grants in technologies affected by either patent thickets or highly dispersed patent ownership.
    Date: 2014–06
  3. By: Szabolcs Blazsek; Álvaro Escribano
    Abstract: Dynamic interactions among stock return, Research and Development (R&D) expenses, patent applications based on R&D investment, and the propensity to patent are studied in this work for a panel of firms from the United States. The panel includes technologically similar firms, neck-to-neck, mostly from the drugs product-market sector. Firms’ propensity to patent is modeled by a dynamic latent-factor patent count data model that separates patented and non patented R&D. Patent innovation leader and follower firms are identified according to their knowledge stock. Significant and positive dynamic spillover effects are obtained among patent application leaders and followers. We observe that neck-to-neck firms in patent innovation activity produce an inverted-U relationship between market competition and innovation. Furthermore, firms’ propensity to patent is positively correlated with market competition and there is a positive feedback in both directions. Increasing the degree of competition in the market enhances innovation and patent applications, in order to help firms to appropriate part of the benefits of their R&D investments. On the other hand, firms by increasing their patent applications defend themselves from competitors, trying to improve their market share. However, due to the diffusion of knowledge through patent applications, knowledge spills over to competitors therefore, the degree of competition and innovation increases in the market.
    Keywords: propensity to patent, competition, technological proximity, patent innovation leaders and followers, latent factor patent count data model, panel vector autoregression, simulated quasi maximum likelihood, efficient importance sampling
    JEL: C15 C31 C32 C33 C41
    Date: 2014–06
  4. By: Masayuki Morikawa
    Abstract: This paper, using Japanese firm-level data, presents findings about innovative activities in the service sector and the role of patents and trade secrets on innovation. According to the analysis, first, service firms have fewer product innovations than do manufacturing firms, but the productivity of innovative service firms is very high. Second, service firms have a low propensity for holding patents, but their holding of trade secrets is comparable to that of the manufacturing firms. Third, patents and trade secrets have positive relationships with product innovations, and the effects are quantitatively similar in magnitude, in both the manufacturing and the service sectors. On the other hand, a positive relationship between trade secrets and process innovations is found only in the manufacturing sector. These results suggest a pivotal role of the law protecting trade secrets on innovation and productivity growth in the service sector.
    Keywords: innovation, service sector, patent, trade secret
    JEL: O31 O34 L80
    Date: 2014–06
  5. By: Gabriel Galvez-Behar (IRHiS - Institut de Recherches Historiques du Septentrion - CNRS : UMR8529 - Université Lille III - Sciences humaines et sociales)
    Abstract: Symbol of a global policy, the TRIPS agreement is often considered as a way to impose a Western intellectual property regime and, thus, as a form of neocolonialism. Some critical analysis of the Western intellectual property invite us to historicize its development and refuse therefore to consider the TRIPS agreement as the inevitable outcome of a teleological process. Characterized by an early international regulation - with the creation of the 1883 Paris Convention on patents and trademarks, and with the 1886 Berne Convention on copyright - the history of intellectual property gives rise, it is true, to such a finalist perspective. For some, insofar as they were concluded when the Western countries shared Africa and the world, these treaties symbolize the first step of an imperial vision of intellectual property. The parallel is tempting : the late 19th century conventions would be to imperialism what the TRIPS agreement is to neo-colonialism. However, concerning the industrial property, this analogy is problematic and threatens to revive the teleological perspective which is denounced. To what extent, in fact, did the 1883 convention constitute a form of imperialism ? How were the territories under the domination of Western countries embedded in the development of industrial property in the 19th century and the early 20th century ? Our paper has no other purpose than to offer some considerations about the patent right relating with these questions. First, we will consider the issue of international but also sub-national diversity : culture can not be only considered from a national point of view and even in industrialized countries traditional knowledge, for example, was excluded from the field of patentability. Then we will focus on the emergence of the Paris convention, which constituted, at the same time, a French attempt to homogenize the international patent practices and a way to close the patent controversy. At last, our paper will deal with the integration of colonies in the Paris Union, which occurred in the Interwar period and especially with the Hague Conference (1925), which will be analyzed more specifically.
    Keywords: brevets d'invention; propriété industrielle; histoire; innovation; Union de Paris
    Date: 2014–05–15
  6. By: Yamauchi, Isamu; Nagaoka, Sadao
    Abstract: We investigate how a deferred patent examination system promotes ex-ante screening of patent applications, which reduces both the number of granted patents and the use of economic resources for examinations, without reducing the return from R&D. Based on a real option theory, we develop a model of examination request behaviors. Exploiting the responses of Japanese firms to recent policy reform, we find that the shortening of the allowable period for an examination request significantly increases both eventual and early requests, controlling for the blocking use of a pending patent application. This effect is stronger in technology areas with higher uncertainty. These results support the importance of uncertainty for an applicant and of ex-ante screening.
    Keywords: patent, examination, option value, fee structure, R&D
    JEL: C41 L21 O34
    Date: 2014–06
  7. By: Noemí Pulido Pavón (University of Seville, Spain); Luis Palma Martos (University of Seville, Spain)
    Abstract: The analysis and implications of copyright provide the foundation for copyright economics, where an array of different streams of thought coexist feeding a number of controversies that at the same time both hinder and enrich the research agenda. One of the keenest debates concerns the relation between copyright and competition policy. The goal of the current work is to explore to what extent competition policy determines the level of protection afforded to copyright. The paper also analyses the effect of other variables such as education, innovation, culture and national wealth. Panel data techniques are applied for a sample of eight countries over the period 2006 to 2011. Findings show that copyright protection is more intense in countries which have more effective competition policy laws, and which perform better in education, innovation and wealth. The link with regard to spending on culture does not prove significant, opening up a range of hypotheses for formulating cultural policy goals and instruments. In terms of countries, those in the Mediterranean area display the weakest regimes for protecting intellectual property.
    Keywords: Intellectual Property Rights, Copyright Economics, Competition Policy, Panel Data Techniques.
    JEL: D4 L5 Z1
    Date: 2014–06
  8. By: Bekkers, Rudi; Baron, Justus; Martinelli, Arianna; Ménière, Yann; Nomaler, Önder; Pohlmann, Tim
    Date: 2014–06
  9. By: Benedikt Fecher; Sascha Friesike; Marcel Hebing
    Abstract: Despite widespread support from policy makers, funding agencies, and scientific journals, academic researchers rarely make their research data available to others. At the same time, data sharing in research is attributed a vast potential for scientific progress. It allows the reproducibility of study results and the reuse of old data for new research questions. Based on a systematic review of 98 scholarly papers and an empirical survey among 603 secondary data users, we develop a conceptual framework that explains the process of data sharing from the primary researcher's point of view. We show that this process can be divided into six descriptive categories: Data donor, research organization, research community, norms, data infrastructure, and data recipients. Drawing from our findings, we discuss theoretical implications regarding knowledge creation and dissemination as well as research policy measures to foster academic collaboration. We conclude that research data cannot be regarded a knowledge commons, but research policies that better incentivize data sharing are needed to improve the quality of research results and foster scientific progress.
    Keywords: Data Sharing, Academia, Systematic Review, Research Policy, Knowledge Commons, Crowd Science, Commons-based Peer Production, SOEP
    JEL: C81 C82 D02 H41 L17 Z13
    Date: 2014

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