nep-ipr New Economics Papers
on Intellectual Property Rights
Issue of 2014‒11‒12
six papers chosen by
Giovanni Ramello
Università degli Studi del Piemonte Orientale “Amedeo Avogadro”

  1. International Patenting Strategies of Chinese Residents: an analysis of foreign-oriented patent families By Mila Kashcheeva; Sacha Wunsch-Vincent; Hao Zhou
  2. Competition Policy and Intellectual Property: Insights from Developed Country Experience By Scherer, F. M.; Watal, Jayashree
  3. A patentability requirement and industries targeted by R&D By Keiichi Kishi
  4. The Effects of Smoothing of the Renewal Fees on Patent Option Value(in Japanese) By Setsuo Yamada
  5. Patents, Innovation and Economic Geography By Francesco LISSONI; Ernest MIGUELEZ
  6. Empowering Rights-holders and Facilitating Duty-bearers to Secure Farmers’ Rights in Nepal By Paudel, Bikash; Sthapit, Sajal

  1. By: Mila Kashcheeva (Research Fellow, BB&T Center for Education and Economic Policy Studies, and Center for China Studies, Clemson University, USA.); Sacha Wunsch-Vincent (Economics and Statistics Division, WIPO); Hao Zhou (Economics and Statistics Division, WIPO)
    Abstract: In terms of the number of its patent applications, in 2012 China has emerged as the country with the largest IP office in the world. The performance of the Chinese IP system is thus increasingly in the spotlight. While significant economic studies have been devoted to the rise of domestic patenting in China, hardly any study has focused on Chinese patent filings in foreign countries. This paper analyzes Chinese patenting abroad by using WIPO’s foreign-oriented patent family dataset and a respective enterprise questionnaire. It finds that by the turn of the century China emerged as major actor in terms of international patenting. While this is changing rapidly, the share of Chinese patents which get filed abroad is still a fraction of total patents filed at home and most patents still also only target one foreign IP office. Chinese foreign-oriented patent families are concentrated in a few technology fields, notably those related to the ICT sector, “Digital communication”, followed by “Computer technology”, “Nanotechnology”, and similar fields. A few Chinese firms are responsible for a large share of total Chinese patents filed abroad. The paper however also highlights that some of these trends are changing rapidly towards more intensive and broad-based filing abroad. Initial results from a selective firm survey also show a shift from the desire to protect technologies abroad to more strategic motives: (i) the desire to build patent portfolios avoiding litigation, (ii) facilitating collaboration with other firms, but also to (iii) license and sell IP abroad, and to (iv) further the firm’s reputation as true innovator.
    Keywords: China, innovation, intellectual property, patents, patent families, information technology
    JEL: F20 F23 L86 O3 O31 O34
    Date: 2014–09
  2. By: Scherer, F. M. (Harvard University); Watal, Jayashree (World Trade Organization)
    Abstract: This paper, written for a World Trade Organization compendium, investigates the possibilities open to developing nations for controlling the abuse of intellectual property rights, and in particular patents, under Articles 31 and 40 of the Uruguay Round TRIPS (trade-related aspects of intellectual property) treaty. Article 40 authorizes nations to use their competition policy laws to combat abuses of intellectual property rights, among other things, by invoking the compulsory licensing provisions of Article 31. This paper reviews historically the experience of competition policy authorities in dealing with patent and other intellectual property abuses in the United States, the European Community, Japan, Canada, South Africa, and other jurisdictions and reviews the known consequences of compulsory licensing orders inter alia for companies' continuing efforts to advance technology. Currently controversial fields such as pharmaceuticals and information technology are accorded special attention.
    Date: 2014–02
  3. By: Keiichi Kishi (Graduate School of Economics, Osaka University)
    Abstract: We introduce into a Schumpeterian growth model an inventive step, which is a minimum innovation size required for patents, and thus a patentability requirement. We show that in order to satisfy an inventive step requirement, each R&D firm targets only industries in which the incumbentfs technology is sufficiently obsolete. This is because the technological gap between innovator and incumbent is larger in industries that use older technologies. Although strengthening an inventive step requirement reduces the number of industries targeted by R&D, it also increases the amount of R&D investment directed at the targeted industries. Consequently, introducing an inventive step has either a nonmonotonic or a negative effect on the aggregate flow of innovations, which has some empirical support. Furthermore, by deriving the endogenous long-run distribution of innovation size, we show that strengthening an inventive step reduces innovation size on average, which also has empirical support. This implies that even if the patent office only grants patents for superior innovations, compared with prior art references, this causes innovators to produce inferior-quality innovations on average.
    Keywords: Technological progress, Innovations, Intellectual property rights
    JEL: O31 O34 O41
    Date: 2014–10
  4. By: Setsuo Yamada
    Abstract: This paper aims to construct a patent option model suitable for the Japanese patent system, and then to explore empirically the economic effects caused by the significant revision of the Japanese patent maintenance fees in 1998. The revision of patent law in 1998 fundamentally changed the fee schedule so that payments peaked in ten to twelve year after patent registration, followed by a level off, which resulted in major fee reductions. This was a very bold change in the patent fee structure compared to historical structures of patent fee maintenance in Japan and other major countries. The leveling-off of patent maintenance fees was aimed to reduce cost burden on patent owners and to give incentives to their R&D activities. In addition, it served to contain the special patent account's rising surplus. The simulation results based on the patent option model show that the introduction of the leveling-off maintenance fees enables the patent to hold the patent term longer, while minimizing the influence on the patent option value. However, it is confirmed to have a relatively substantial effect on reducing patent fee revenues.
    Date: 2013–01
  5. By: Francesco LISSONI; Ernest MIGUELEZ
    Abstract: In this paper we review 20 years of quantitative research in the geography of innovation, to whose advancement patent data have contributed in a decisive way. We know now that the importance attributed by the earliest studies to knowledge externalities as an agglomeration force was excessive. Localized knowledge flows exist, and explain agglomeration, but they are largely mediated by the labor market and markets for technologies. Besides, we know now that physical distance may affect knowledge diffusion, but so do social distance between inventors as well as inter- and intra-national borders. We also witness an ongoing widening of the research focus, from local/regional to international, with migration issues concerning inventors coming to the forefront.
    Keywords: economic geography, patents, intellectual property, innovation, inventors, spillovers, migration
    JEL: F22 J61 O31 R11 R12
    Date: 2014
  6. By: Paudel, Bikash; Sthapit, Sajal
    Abstract: Nepal has ratified both the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) and the International Treaty on Plant Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture (ITPGRFA). As such, it has accepted its role as a duty-bearer to its people, including the duty to uphold farmers’ rights to plant genetic resources for food and agriculture and their associated traditional knowledge. The chapter discuss how the simultaneous empowerment of right-holders and duty bearers is important for realization of farmers' right by smallholder farmers.
    Keywords: farmers' rights, plant genetic resources, right holder, duty bearer
    JEL: O34 Q18 Q34 Q37 Q57
    Date: 2013

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