The International System of Intellectual Property from the Perspective of the Economics of Legal Federalism

19 Pages Posted: 4 May 2018

See all articles by Diane Asobo

Diane Asobo

University of Marburg, Division of Humanities and Social Sciences, School of Business & Economics

Wolfgang Kerber

University of Marburg - School of Business & Economics

Date Written: April 30, 2018

Abstract

The international system of IPRs (patents, copyrights) is a complex and partly fragmented two-level system of national IP law regimes and international treaties, characterized by a combination of minimum harmonisation and the retaining of some national sovereignty (e.g., TRIPS agreement with "flexibilities"). Taking up the proposal of Dinwoodie & Dreyfuss (2012) to conceptualize the international IP system as a 'neo-federalist' system, we use the economic theory of legal federalism with its framework of economic criteria for the advantages and disadvantages of more harmonisation or diversity for the analysis of the international patent system. Important results from an economic perspective are that there might also be good economic reasons why patent laws should not be fully harmonised (esp. due to different policy objectives and the advantages of experimentation), but that a greater harmonisation would also allow for reducing costs through applying mechanisms for better collaboration between patent offices (e.g. through work-sharing). Overall, an economic analysis from the perspective of legal federalism can lead to a better understanding of the complex trade off-problems between the benefits and costs of harmonisation or diversity in regard to intellectual property.

Keywords: Patent, International IP System, Legal Federalism, TRIPS

JEL Classification: F53, H77, K33, O34

Suggested Citation

Asobo, Diane and Kerber, Wolfgang, The International System of Intellectual Property from the Perspective of the Economics of Legal Federalism (April 30, 2018). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3172851 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3172851

Diane Asobo (Contact Author)

University of Marburg, Division of Humanities and Social Sciences, School of Business & Economics ( email )

Am Plan 2
Marburg
Germany

Wolfgang Kerber

University of Marburg - School of Business & Economics ( email )

Am Plan 2
Marburg, D-35037
Germany
+49 6421 2823921 (Phone)

Register to save articles to
your library

Register

Paper statistics

Downloads
35
Abstract Views
209
PlumX Metrics