Patents in the Global Economy
Queen Mary University of London - School of Law
February 10, 2011
PATENTS IN THE GLOBAL ECONOMY, Intellectual Property Office, December 2010
Queen Mary School of Law Legal Studies Research Paper No. 73/2011
Following implementation of the TRIPS Agreement it has become more widely recognized that, while patents can stimulate the inventive process by avoiding the free-rider problem, by promoting investment in research and development (R&D) and by encouraging diffusion of knowledge, patents can also hinder development if a balance between rewarding inventors and safeguarding the public domain for a wider public good is not achieved. It is in the context of this debate about the role of patents in the global economy that the paper examines in detail: (i) whether patents can be used as a stimulus for invention and innovation; (ii) the role of patents in recently industrialized countries; (iii) the impact of patents on development; (iv) the role of licensing and technology transfer; (v) the impact of the TRIPS Agreement; (vi) public health issues: given that concerns about the appropriateness of the present patent system have focused, in particular, on health and access to medicines in developing countries, alternatives to the present patent system will then be considered in relation to current initiatives to address public health imperatives; and (vii) prospects for the future, particularly in terms of the potential of using patent information to stimulate invention and innovation.
Number of Pages in PDF File: 37Accepted Paper Series
Date posted: February 17, 2011 ; Last revised: September 16, 2012
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