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Are Patent Offices Substitutes?

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  • Elise Petit
  • Bruno Van Pottelsberghe
  • Lluís Gimeno Fabra

Abstract

This paper evaluates whether and to what extent patent offices can substitute for each other. Based on an original dataset comprising 7.200 PCT patents filed simultaneously in Japan, the USA and Europe, the empirical analysis confirms that the degree of substitution is significant. Patent offices search up to 37% less technology classes, generate up to 33% less citations, and send up to 43% less communications when a PCT application was previously processed by another office. They also rely more on international citations and provide more information in the early stage of the examination process. Further substitution may still be leveraged, as around 55% of technology classes searched and up to 70% of backward citations are duplicates -voluntarily or not - of prior examination work.

Suggested Citation

  • Elise Petit & Bruno Van Pottelsberghe & Lluís Gimeno Fabra, 2021. "Are Patent Offices Substitutes?," Working Papers ECARES 2021-18, ULB -- Universite Libre de Bruxelles.
  • Handle: RePEc:eca:wpaper:2013/330841
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    1. 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.
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    Cited by:

    1. Elise Petit & Bruno van Pottelsberghe de la Potterie & Lluis Gimeno-Fabra, 2022. "Global patent systems: Revisiting the national bias hypothesis," Journal of International Business Policy, Palgrave Macmillan, vol. 5(1), pages 56-67, March.
    2. Higham, Kyle & Contisciani, Martina & De Bacco, Caterina, 2022. "Multilayer patent citation networks: A comprehensive analytical framework for studying explicit technological relationships," Technological Forecasting and Social Change, Elsevier, vol. 179(C).

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    Keywords

    Patent systems; TRIPs; national bias; examination; international comparison;
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