nep-ipr New Economics Papers
on Intellectual Property Rights
Issue of 2014‒08‒02
four papers chosen by
Giovanni Ramello
Università degli Studi del Piemonte Orientale “Amedeo Avogadro”

  1. Innovation on the seed market: the role of IPRs and commercialisation rules By Marc Baudry; Adrien Hervouet
  2. Is the Time Allocated to Review Patent Applications Inducing Examiners to Grant Invalid Patents?: Evidence from Micro-Level Application Data By Michael D. Frakes; Melissa F. Wasserman
  3. It is all about ME! Personal branding in Property Research By Thompson, Bob
  4. The Management of Organisations as a Target for Productivity Gains in Australia: Intellectual Assets By Christina Boedker; Kieron Meagher; Richard Vidgen; Julie Cogin; Jan Mouritsen

  1. By: Marc Baudry; Adrien Hervouet
    Abstract: This article deals with the impact of legislation in the seed sector on incentives for variety creation. The first category of rules consists in intellectual property rights and is intended to address a problem of sequential innovation and R&D investments. The second category concerns commercial rules that are intended to correct a problem of adverse selection. We propose a dynamic model of market equilibrium with vertical product differentiation that enables us to take into account the economic consequences of imposing either Plant Breeders’ Rights (PBRs) or patents as IPRs and either compulsory registration or minimum standards as commercialisation rules. The main result is that the combination of minimum standards and PBRs (patents) provides higher incentives for sequential and initial innovation and may be preferred by a public regulator when sunk investment costs are low (high) and the probability of R&D success is sufficiently high (low).
    Keywords: Intellectual Property Rights, Plant Breeders’ Rights, Catalogue, Product differentiation, Seed market, Biodiversity
    JEL: D43 K11 L13 Q12 Q16
    Date: 2014
  2. By: Michael D. Frakes; Melissa F. Wasserman
    Abstract: This paper explores how examiner behavior is altered by the time allocated for reviewing a patent application. Insufficient examination time may crowd out examiner search effort, impeding the ability to form time-intensive prior-art-based rejections (especially, obviousness rejections) and thus leaving examiners more inclined to grant otherwise invalid applications. To test this prediction, we trace the behavior of individual examiners over the course of a series of certain promotions that carry with them a substantial reduction in expected examination time. For these purposes, we use novel micro-level application data spanning a ten year period and estimate examiner fixed-effects specifications that allow us to control flexibly for examiner heterogeneity. We find evidence demonstrating that search efforts and time-intensive rejections indeed fall, while granting tendencies rise, upon the promotions of interest. Assuming that patent examiners will tend to make the correct patentability determinations when provided sufficient examination time, our results suggest that the present schedule of time allotments may be inducing patent examiners to grant patents that otherwise fail to meet the patentability requirements.
    JEL: K0 O30 O38
    Date: 2014–07
  3. By: Thompson, Bob
    Abstract: Just as companies brand their products to create unique associations in the minds of their target consumers, personal branding involves the creation of strong, unique and favourable associations in the minds of the people around them. However, unlike products which have a conscious marketing program to build and maintain brand values, personal brands are often built unconsciously. Yet content creators have a complete set of tools at their disposal to ensure that they are in control of their own brand. Academics have long been judged, albeit crudely, by the volume of their published work and their ability to place it in the “right� journal. In the commercial world, by comparison, personal branding is often subsumed into the brand of the corporate paymaster. In this context letting personal branding become visible raises important issues of trust often buried by blanket bans on the use of social media for example..On the other hand, employers are increasingly using social media tools to vet applicants before offering them interviews. Such techniques range from searching the applicants Facebook or Twitter feed to conducting large background checks using search engines and other tools.This paper presents significant research into the relationship between corporate and personal branding undertaken across the whole business services sector and presents the results of a survey taken amongst corporate and academic researchers about their own efforts to build and maintain a personal brand. This is triangulated against a survey of companies within the real estate sector seeking out the corporate view.Personal branding cuts across established ideas of employment policy and the monitoring of employees as well as having an impact on the marketing drivers of real estate. It sits at the heart of what property research is and what it might become.
    Date: 2014
  4. By: Christina Boedker; Kieron Meagher; Richard Vidgen; Julie Cogin; Jan Mouritsen
    Abstract: Discussion around total factor productivity gains for the Australian Economy often focuses on infrastructure bottlenecks, technology adoption, competition and labour market flexibility. Although a potential area for gains, management is typically omitted from the public policy debate because it is considered too hard to quantify and as a result there is no concrete case for improvement. In this paper we describe our approach to measuring management as a productivity driver in service firms, developed as part of a study commissioned by the Australian Commonwealth Government. Management, as measured by internal stocks of intellectual assets are significantly related with higher productivity: our analysis predicts that a low performing firm could realise an increase in productivity of up to 13.3% if it were to improve its intellectual asset. However, after controlling for intellectual assets competition and ownership structure are not significant determinants of firm level productivity. We also discuss policy initiatives available to policy makers.
    Keywords: productivity, service industries, public policy, intellectual assets, management
    Date: 2014–07

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