The Nature of Innovative Activity and the Protection of Intellectual Property in Asia
21 Pages Posted: 6 Jan 2015
Date Written: January 2015
This paper examines trends in innovative activity in several major Asian countries during the period 1997–2011 as measured by their filings and grants of various types of intellectual property (IP). By almost all measures, there has been a remarkable increase in innovative activity in China. In fact, in 2011, China accounted for roughly 25% of global patent applications. However, several indirect measures suggest that the quality of this newly created Chinese IP is not (yet) world‐class. For example, relative to residents of other major Asian countries and the USA, Chinese residents tend to file IP applications in foreign markets at a much lower rate. Similarly, the ratio of royalty payments earned by Chinese residents to the number of patents granted to them is fairly low by international standards. Finally, the ratio of patent to utility model applications (typically granted for relatively minor innovations) in China is also relatively small.
Keywords: industrial designs, innovation, patent, quality, trademark, utility model
JEL Classification: O31, O34, O53, O57, F63
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