[EAS] TIIP Newsletter 2005-1

pjk pjk at design.eng.yale.edu
Fri Feb 25 23:10:01 EST 2005

Mail*Link¨ SMTP               TIIP Newsletter 2005-1

These mailings have often commented on the inadequacies of the
patent system. Anyone interested in this topic might want to
consider this newsletter. Subscription info at the end.  --PJK

Issue 2005-1

To view the complete contents click on:

* * * *
Patent Continuation Abuse

Mark Lemley and Kimberly Moore take a comprehensive look at a US
patent  practice that is not well-known: continuations. Under this
practice, a patent application can be kept alive even after the
patent examiner has issued a "final rejection." Lemley and Moore
look at policy changes to limit some common abuses.

Submarines in Software

One such abuse is the practice of "submarine patenting"-keeping a
patent application secret for a long time and then springing it on
an industry that has already invested heavily in the technology.
Stuart Graham and David Mowery examine the role of submarine
patents in software patenting.

Global Welfare & Drug Patents

Should patent laws for pharmaceuticals be relaxed in poor countries?
 Doing so involves a trade-off: it may save lives now, but it may
reduce incentives for drug companies to develop new products. F. M.
Scherer calculates the net effect of this trade-off and concludes
that it may well be better to let poor countries free-ride.

Who Patents and Why?

Wesley Cohen, Richard Nelson and John Walsh report on the
comprehensive Carnegie Mellon survey on innovation at manufacturing
firms. They find important differences across industries as to why
firms patent based on the nature of the technology.

Patents and Innovation

One difficult empirical puzzle is the relationship between patents
and  innovation. Petra Moser looks at this issue with a unique
dataset of innovations exhibited at World's Fairs during the 19th
century. She finds that countries with patent systems do not have a
higher rate of innovation per capita, but patents affect the
industries in which different countries make their innovations.

Changing of the Guard

Beginning with the next issue, Robert M. Hunt of the Federal Reserve
 Bank of Philadelphia will become our new Editor, and our current
Editor,  James Bessen, will no longer have this newsletter as an
excuse for  failing to keep up with his other commitments. We look
forward to Bob's  stewardship.

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