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The value of U.S. patents by owner and patent characteristics

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  • Bessen, James

Abstract

This paper uses renewal data to estimate the value of U.S. patents, controlling for patent and owner characteristics. Estimates of U.S. patent value are substantially larger than estimates for European patents, however, the ratio of U.S. patent value to R&D for firms is only about 3%. Contrary to a common assertion, patents issued to small patentees are much less valuable than those issued to large corporations. Litigated patents are more valuable, as are highly cited patents. However, patent citations explain little variance in value, suggesting limits to their use as a measure of patent quality.

Suggested Citation

  • Bessen, James, 2008. "The value of U.S. patents by owner and patent characteristics," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 37(5), pages 932-945, June.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:respol:v:37:y:2008:i:5:p:932-945
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