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Assessing the Economic Effects of Patents

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  • Marc Dressler

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Abstract

This paper seeks to establish against which standard the economic effects of patents are to be assessed. It does so in presenting the two economic doctrines of patents’ role in economy. The first doctrine assumes for patents an incentive function to innovate; the second doctrine assumes for patents a protective function to sustain competition based on innovations. Criticism of the doctrines reveals crucial shortcomings of both, what makes any research idle on how effectively patents fulfil the respective functions. This leads to the conclusion that due to the lack of a sufficient economic theory of patents, an assessment of the economic effects of patents cannot be conclusive; thus, any economic justification of a patent system must be biassed to date. Copyright Springer Science + Business Media, LLC 2012

Suggested Citation

  • Marc Dressler, 2012. "Assessing the Economic Effects of Patents," Journal of the Knowledge Economy, Springer;Portland International Center for Management of Engineering and Technology (PICMET), vol. 3(3), pages 294-301, September.
  • Handle: RePEc:spr:jknowl:v:3:y:2012:i:3:p:294-301
    DOI: 10.1007/s13132-011-0045-8
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    File URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10.1007/s13132-011-0045-8
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Boldrin,Michele & Levine,David K., 2010. "Against Intellectual Monopoly," Cambridge Books, Cambridge University Press, number 9780521127264, April.
    2. Kenneth Arrow, 1962. "Economic Welfare and the Allocation of Resources for Invention," NBER Chapters,in: The Rate and Direction of Inventive Activity: Economic and Social Factors, pages 609-626 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    3. Rosenberg, Nathan, 1974. "Science, Invention and Economic Growth," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 84(333), pages 90-108, March.
    4. Keith E. Maskus, 2000. "Intellectual Property Rights in the Global Economy," Peterson Institute Press: All Books, Peterson Institute for International Economics, number 99.
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