28-29 November 2012
This year's 'Conference on Patent Statistics for Decision Makers', hosted by the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) in Paris, was organised in collaboration with the European Patent Office (EPO). The conference is one of the most important events for patent statistics worldwide, where major players share experiences and develop synergies at global level.
A high-level policy panel was made up of Ambassador Richard Boucher (Deputy Secretary-General, OECD), Benoît Battistelli (President, EPO), Francis Gurry (Director General, World Intellectual Property Organization) and Jorge Ávila (President, Instituto Nacional de Propriedade Industrial, Brazil). They discussed the role of policy in fostering economic growth by leveraging knowledge-based assets. The panel highlighted the role of intellectual property rights in this process.
"Policy makers are looking for new sources of growth to reinvigorate our economies", said OECD DSG Boucher. "There is a lot more emphasis on knowledge-based assets like R&D, business practices and intellectual property, and on how to turn new endeavours into new opportunities for a wide range of people. In addition to incentivising inventors, intellectual property rights like patents play a critical role in fostering whole new sets of innovative industries."
EPO President Battistelli said: "The strong increase in the number patent applications worldwide, the significance of Asian prior art - which is difficult for many to access - and the sensitivity of the public in relation to patentability in biotech sectors are among the biggest challenges the patent system has to face. As a patent office, the EPO responds by acting to foster the quality of patents and the wide dissemination of patent information. This is how the patent system can really play its role as an economic tool to support innovation and generate economic growth."
This annual conference provides a forum where statistics and economic analysis can provide further guidance for policy makers and where, in turn, scholars can discuss research addressing policy-relevant questions. The increasing success of the event confirms the importance of patent offices in providing sound data in support of evidence-based policy making. Patent data constitutes a unique source of information and can be useful in addressing a wide range of policy-relevant issues related to innovation, science and technology, and entrepreneurship. It is key to a better understanding of the way knowledge-based assets affect business performance and economic growth.