Discussion rounds

The discussion rounds at the conference are your chance to get involved and help the EPO to set its priorities for European patent information in future.

Except for a super-workshop for expert users which is planned for 9 November, all discussion rounds and tutorials will take place on 7 November 2017.

IMPORTANT! Pre-registration is required for the discussion rounds.

Every conference delegate is entitled to participate in one discussion round (depending on seat availability). To register, please use the online form. We will not grant admission to people who have not registered in advance.

09.00 - 10.30 hrs
Discussion round 1

Is white spot analysis increasingly important in today's patent information work?

Most companies have a need to strengthen their patent portfolio in order to defend their competitive position and become or remain a technology leader. White spot analysis is one technique that helps with the technical analysis of patents. The results of the patent analysis are used to identify "white spots" within a technology field and develop new patentable ideas. This session will discuss how important white spot is today and how important it will be in the future, and it will ask how the tools currently for white spot analysis available can develop in future.
Summary (1.4 MB)

Report (PDF, 96 KB)

Discussion round 2

Freedom-to-operate: what does the client expect from the patent searcher?

Freedom-to-operate is perhaps the "king of patent searches". It is a highly skilled activity and often important decisions will depend on the result. When clients ask for a freedom-to-operate search, what do they expect? What can searchers do to ensure they understand and deliver what the client needs? Do the tools support the searcher in achieving that goal?
Summary (PDF, 1.1 MB)

Report (PDF, 97 KB)

Discussion round 3

Accessing court decisions on patents - what are the best resources and how does ECLI help?

Patent searchers occasionally need to retrieve data on court decisions on patents. A recent EU initiative is making this task easier, with the introduction of ECLI (European case-law identifiers), which now also includes decisions of the EPO's boards of appeal. This session will be an opportunity to compare traditional case-law sources with ECLI and discuss the advantages and disadvantages of the two.
Summary (PDF, 1.4 MB)

Report (PDF, 221 KB)

Discussion round 4

Monitoring and alerting - what are today's unanswered challenges?

With increasing amount of patent data appearing every week, and increasing computer power to analysis it, patent monitoring is in a state of flux. On the one hand, the quantity of data poses a growing challenge, and on the other, the tools available constantly improve. What are the challenges that patent searchers face today with their regular monitoring work, and what can the providers do to address those challenges?
Summary (PDF, 1.3 MB)

Report (PDF, 143 KB)

10.45 - 12.15 hrs
Discussion round 5

Legal event codes and the WIPO standard on legal status data: quo vadis?

The IP5 offices and WIPO have initiated various activities to increase the quality and usefulness of legal event data for patents, making the life of patent information users easier and more meaningful.

In this context, the WIPO standard on legal status data for patents deserves special attention. This session will discuss the WIPO standard, the underlying categories for legal events and the "status event codes". How and in which situations will the standard be used? What do patent information users expect from the standard, and how could the standard be developed further?
Summary (PDF, 1.1 MB)

Discussion round 6

Patent information in the innovation process - role of the patent searcher?

A recent EPO survey has confirmed that patent information is used in the innovation process, and that the EPO is one of the most important providers in this field. Exactly HOW patent information is use seems to vary considerably, depending on the technology, company policy and other factors. This session will delve more deeply into the question of patent information's contribution to innovation, and on the roles that patent searchers play in ensuring the best use of patent information.
Summary (PDF, 1.1 MB)

Discussion round 7

Are visual analytics the next breakthrough in big data?

The field of big data analytics calls for advanced machine learning techniques. techniques that are everywhere on internet, if you know where to look. However, domain experts have so far failed to take full benefit of these techniques due to the high level of knowledge in IT they require. In previous years, the EPO Patent Information Conference has looked at big data and the huge potential for extracting additional knowledge from big data by interconnecting various data sources, e.g. patent data with other data sources. This session explores one possible way forward for opening big data up to a larger user base – visual analytics.

Visual analytics is an emerging domain in this context. Can visual analytics provide a remedy by empowering domain experts with access to these new tools and visualising the output?
Summary (PDF, 1.4 MB)

Report (PDF, 140 KB)

Discussion round 8

Patent evaluation tools – an exchange of views

The EPO's IPscore patent portfolio evaluation tool continues to attract many users from different disciplines. Yet there has been no new release of IPscore for a number of years. The EPO has therefore done a recent survey in order to help in its decision-making for the future of IPscore in the context of the other tools available on the market. What is the future of qualitative and quantitative patent evaluation and patent portfolio management? What are the strengths of the best products available today and what do users expect for the future?
Summary (PDF, 1.1 MB)
Report (PDF, 93 KB)

Further information on registering for discussion rounds

There is space for about 30 participants in each discussion round. Based on the principle of first-come, first-served, we will place each conference registrant in their first choice. If this is not possible, we'll look for a place in the second choice. We try to avoid placing two participants from one company or organisation in one discussion round.

During the final two weeks leading up to the conference, any remaining places in the discussion rounds will be filled by taking into account registrants' second and third choices.

Discussion round chairmen

Are you interested in chairing a discussion round? Please write to conference@epo.org.

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