Does the outsourcing of prior art search increase the efficiency of patent examination?
AbstractThis paper investigates the effects of outsourcing of prior art search on the efficiency of patent examination, using a large scale Japanese patent examination data. Outsourcing may increase examination quality by expanding the scope of prior art search, while it may have a negative effect if the synergy between search and examination is important. If examination quality is the predominant concern for outsourcing decision and the outsourcing is constrained by budgetary resources, we expect that outsourcing enhances examination quality at its margin. On the other hand, if an examiner can save private cost by outsourcing, an increase in outsourcing can decrease the quality. Controlling for the endogeneity of outsourcing decision as well as examiners’ fixed effects, we found that the outsourcing of prior art search significantly decreased the frequency of appeals against both examiners’ rejection and grant decisions and reduced the length of examination duration. At the same time we found that the prior art search of complex inventions is not outsourced. These suggest that the opportunity for exploiting external knowledge and capability can increase the quality as well as the speed of examination.
Download InfoIf you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.
Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by Institute of Innovation Research, Hitotsubashi University in its series IIR Working Paper with number 13-12.
Length: 35 p.
Date of creation: May 2013
Date of revision:
patent; examination; outsourcing; search; prior art;
Find related papers by JEL classification:
- O38 - Economic Development, Technological Change, and Growth - - Technological Change; Research and Development; Intellectual Property Rights - - - Government Policy
- O34 - Economic Development, Technological Change, and Growth - - Technological Change; Research and Development; Intellectual Property Rights - - - Intellectual Property and Intellectual Capital
- O30 - Economic Development, Technological Change, and Growth - - Technological Change; Research and Development; Intellectual Property Rights - - - General
This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:
- NEP-ALL-2013-05-24 (All new papers)
- NEP-CUL-2013-05-24 (Cultural Economics)
- NEP-INO-2013-05-24 (Innovation)
- NEP-IPR-2013-05-24 (Intellectual Property Rights)
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
- David Popp & Ted Juhl & Daniel K.N. Johnson, 2003. "Time in Purgatory: Determinants of the Grant Lag for U.S. Patent Applications," NBER Working Papers 9518, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Caillaud, Bernard & Duchêne, Anne, 2011.
"Patent office in innovation policy: Nobody's perfect,"
International Journal of Industrial Organization,
Elsevier, vol. 29(2), pages 242-252, March.
- Bernard Caillaud & Anne Duchene, 2009. "Patent Office in innovation policy: Nobody's perfect," PSE Working Papers halshs-00575019, HAL.
- Goto, Akira & Motohashi, Kazuyuki, 2007. "Construction of a Japanese Patent Database and a first look at Japanese patenting activities," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 36(9), pages 1431-1442, November.
- Iain M. Cockburn & Samuel Kortum & Scott Stern, 2002. "Are All Patent Examiners Equal? The Impact of Examiner Characteristics," NBER Working Papers 8980, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Dietmar Harhoff & Stefan Wagner, 2009. "The Duration of Patent Examination at the European Patent Office," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 55(12), pages 1969-1984, December.
- Batabyal, Amitrajeet A. & Nijkamp, Peter, 2008. "Is there a tradeoff between average patent pendency and examination errors?," International Review of Economics & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 17(1), pages 150-158.
- Palangkaraya, Alfons & Jensen, Paul H. & Webster, Elizabeth, 2008. "Applicant behaviour in patent examination request lags," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 101(3), pages 243-245, December.
- Bhaven N. Sampat, 2010. "When Do Applicants Search for Prior Art?," Journal of Law and Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 53(2), pages 399-416, 05.
- Liegsalz, Johannes & Wagner, Stefan, 2013.
"Patent examination at the State Intellectual Property Office in China,"
Elsevier, vol. 42(2), pages 552-563.
- Johannes Liegsalz & Stefan Wagner, 2011. "Patent examination at the State Intellectual Property Office in China," ESMT Research Working Papers ESMT-11-06, ESMT European School of Management and Technology.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Digital Resources Section, Hitotsubashi University Library).
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.