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Patent Office Governance and Patent System Quality

  • Picard, Pierre M
  • van Pottelsberghe de la Potterie, Bruno

The present paper discusses the role of quality in patent systems from the perspective of patent offices' behavior and organization. After documenting original stylized facts, the paper presents a model in which patent offices set patent fees and the quality level of their examination processes. Various objectives of patent offices' governors are considered. We show that the quality of the patent system is maximal for the patent office that maximises either the social welfare or its own profit. Quality is lower for the self-funded patent office maximizing the number of patent applications and even smaller for the self-funded patent office maximizing the number of granted patents. A labor union improves examination quality and may compensate for the potentialy inappropriate objectives of patent office management.

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Paper provided by C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers in its series CEPR Discussion Papers with number 8338.

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Date of creation: Apr 2011
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Handle: RePEc:cpr:ceprdp:8338
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  1. Joseph Farrell & Carl Shapiro, 2008. "How Strong Are Weak Patents?," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 98(4), pages 1347-69, September.
  2. Bruno van Pottelsberghe, 2010. "The quality factor in patent systems," Working Papers 422, Bruegel.
  3. Langinier, Corinne & Marcoul, Philippe, 2007. "Patents, Search of Prior Art, and Revelation of Information," Staff General Research Papers 10489, Iowa State University, Department of Economics.
  4. Gaetan de Rassenfosse & Bruno van Pottelsberghe de la Potterie, 2013. "The Role Of Fees In Patent Systems: Theory And Evidence," Journal of Economic Surveys, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 27(4), pages 696-716, 09.
  5. Richard Gilbert and Carl Shapiro., 1989. "Optimal Patent Length and Breadth," Economics Working Papers 89-102, University of California at Berkeley.
  6. Guellec, Dominique & van Pottelsberghe de la Potterie, Bruno, 2007. "The Economics of the European Patent System: IP Policy for Innovation and Competition," OUP Catalogue, Oxford University Press, number 9780199216987, March.
  7. Bruno van Pottelsberghe, 2008. "The London Agreement and the cost of patenting in Europe," Working Papers 264, Bruegel.
  8. Gaétan de Rassenfosse & Bruno Van Pottelsberghe, 2008. "On the price elasticity of demand for patents," Working Papers CEB 08-031.RS, ULB -- Universite Libre de Bruxelles.
  9. Nancy T. Gallini, 1992. "Patent Policy and Costly Imitation," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 23(1), pages 52-63, Spring.
  10. Jérôme Danguy & Gaétan de Rassenfosse & Bruno Van Pottelsberghe, 2010. "The R&D‐Patent relationship: An Industry Perspective," Working Papers ECARES ECARES 2010-038, ULB -- Universite Libre de Bruxelles.
  11. Duranton, Gilles & Martin, Philippe & Mayer, Thierry & Mayneris, Florian, 2010. "The Economics of Clusters: Lessons from the French Experience," OUP Catalogue, Oxford University Press, number 9780199592203, March.
  12. Gans Joshua S & King Stephen P & Lampe Ryan, 2004. "Patent Renewal Fees and Self-Funding Patent Offices," The B.E. Journal of Theoretical Economics, De Gruyter, vol. 4(1), pages 1-15, July.
  13. Dewatripont, Mathias & Legros, Patrick, 2008. "'Essential' Patents, FRAND Royalties and Technological Standards," CEPR Discussion Papers 6925, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  14. Scherer, F M, 1972. "Nordhaus' Theory of Optimal Patent Life: A Geometric Reinterpretation," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 62(3), pages 422-27, June.
  15. Suzanne Scotchmer, 1991. "Standing on the Shoulders of Giants: Cumulative Research and the Patent Law," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 5(1), pages 29-41, Winter.
  16. repec:cup:cbooks:9780521681599 is not listed on IDEAS
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