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Benchmarking R&D and companies through patent analysis using free databases and special software: a tool to improve innovative thinking


  • Dou, Henri Jean-Marie


The availability of free patent databases on the Internet, offers the opportunity of opening the door of patent information not only to patent specialists, but also to many other groups, such as researchers, decision makers, potential inventors and students. The goal of this paper is to show how the combination of free patent databases (in this paper esp@cenet®) and dedicated software makes it possible to perform easily and rapidly tests on new ideas, the automatic benchmarking of an enterprise's activity and the stimulation of innovative thinking. The benchmarking of companies alone, or of clusters of enterprises is exemplified with reference to the concept of high temperature lubricating oil technology. How to improve innovative thinking is shown within the context of an analysis of coconut technology in postgraduate courses of competitive intelligence provided in Indonesia. Both applications emphasize that the role of patent information is expanding as a unique source of technical information because free availability combined with easy patent mapping and analysis allow non-specialists to use this information source in all technical aspects of innovation, research and development, and strategic planning.

Suggested Citation

  • Dou, Henri Jean-Marie, 2004. "Benchmarking R&D and companies through patent analysis using free databases and special software: a tool to improve innovative thinking," World Patent Information, Elsevier, vol. 26(4), pages 297-309, December.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:worpat:v:26:y:2004:i:4:p:297-309

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    1. repec:spr:scient:v:75:y:2008:i:1:d:10.1007_s11192-007-1835-4 is not listed on IDEAS
    2. Kengpol, Athakorn & Boonkanit, Prin, 2011. "The decision support framework for developing Ecodesign at conceptual phase based upon ISO/TR 14062," International Journal of Production Economics, Elsevier, vol. 131(1), pages 4-14, May.


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