nep-ipr New Economics Papers
on Intellectual Property Rights
Issue of 2022‒07‒18
two papers chosen by
Giovanni Ramello
Università degli Studi del Piemonte Orientale “Amedeo Avogadro”

  1. Patent screening, innovation, and welfare By Schankerman, Mark; Schuett, Florian
  2. The market for lemons from Sorrento and Gouda from Holland. Do geographical indications certify origin and quality?: Do geographical indications certify origin and quality? By Martijn Huysmans; D. van Noord

  1. By: Schankerman, Mark; Schuett, Florian
    Abstract: Critics claim that patent screening is ineffective, granting low-quality patents that impose unnecessary social costs. We develop an integrated framework, involving patent office exami- nation, fees, and endogenous validity challenges in the courts, to study patent screening both theoretically and quantitatively. In our model, some inventions require the patent incentive while others do not, and asymmetric information creates a need for screening. We show that the endogeneity of challenges implies that courts, even if perfect, cannot solve the screening problem. Simulations of the model, calibrated on U.S. data, indicate that screening is highly imperfect, with almost half of all patents issued on inventions that do not require the patent incentive. While we find that the current patent system generates positive social value, in- tensifying examination would yield large welfare gains. The social value of the patent system would also be larger if complemented by antitrust limits on licensing.
    Keywords: innovation; patent quality; screening; litigation; courts; patent fees; licensing
    JEL: R14 J01
    Date: 2021–10–29
  2. By: Martijn Huysmans; D. van Noord
    Abstract: Geographical indications (GIs) protect regional specialty foods such as lemons from Sorrento and Gouda Holland. While the EU asserts that GIs certify and protect high quality regional specialty products, the US sees them as protectionist. This article develops a conceptual framework of different quality attributes and analyzes how GIs may certify quality on those attributes. Regional origin may count as a quality attribute per se, or only indirectly through taste. The conceptual framework is illustrated with an exploratory blind tasting of Gouda cheeses. While a majority of consumers prefers Gouda North-Holland PDO to generic Gouda, the same is not true for Gouda Holland PGI. This suggests that not all GIs guarantee better taste for all consumers. The framework and empirics clarify the possibilities and limits for GIs to collectively appropriate the brand value of regional foods.
    Keywords: Geographical indications, Regional Foods, Quality, Protected Designationof Origin, Protected Geographical Indication, European Union
    Date: 2021

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