PATLIB: European roots, global impact

1 December 2022

PATLIB key visual

Following the PATLIB Summit in 2019, the EPO launched PATLIB 2.0: a project focussed on technology transfer and IP commercialisation through the network of patent information centres in Europe. The project enhanced our support for these centres which in turn helps them support innovators worldwide.

We are pleased to report on recent developments, co-operation and outreach activities, and training opportunities which emphasise the project's growth.

New additions to the PATLIB family

Three new PATLIB centres joined the network in quarter three 2022, taking the total to 322 centres. As with all network members, the EPO will provide continuous support, including tailored training developed in conjunction with  PATLIB experts. Thanks to these experts, we have added three additional online courses to the existing series of presentations under the theme "PATLIBs for PATLIBs".  These online sessions are for advanced PATLIB centres to present their services to users and guide other centres wishing to set up similar services.

PATLIB Knowledge Transfer to Africa

The EPO and PATLIB experts  continued their extensive work on the PATLIB Knowledge Transfer to Africa initiative, which entered its operational phase in August. After selecting the first group of African universities for the proof of concept phase, the EPO presented its course catalogue, additional services (e.g. tailored training given by PATLIB experts) and planned future activities (e.g. mentoring and twinning).

With input from the participating universities, the EPO drafted individual development plans (IDPs) to ensure participants benefit from the initiative. Based on these IDPs, the PATLIB team compares the participants' needs with the EPO's current training catalogue to identify gaps. As a next step, PATLIB experts and the EPO will develop additional training to complement the current courses.

The EPO also set up channels to streamline communication with the PATLIB experts and participating universities.

Support for Ukraine

The EPO and the State Enterprise Ukrainian Intellectual Property Institute (Ukrpatent) continue to prepare a pilot to transfer knowledge and skills from the PATLIB network to selected Ukrainian institutions. Under the pilot,  experiences and best practices will be exchanged with partner institutions, with proposed activities including  training, mentoring and twinning. The PATLIB team, in close collaboration with Ukrpatent, will prepare IDPs for participants.

Although the EPO and Ukrpatent remain positive about the initiative, the next steps heavily depend on the situation in the country and on Ukrpatent's priorities in these circumstances.

Technology transfer harmonisation

In September, the EPO met with the Certified Licensing Professionals (CLP). The organisations discussed areas of potential collaboration, with the positive atmosphere setting the scene for a future partnership.  The CLP is one of two major players in technology transfer that the EPO has approached. In 2021, the EPO began to intensify its co-operation with the Alliance of Technology Transfer Professionals (ATTP). These vital partnerships help to strengthen the role of the EPO in technology transfer and commercialisation.

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