Screening for Patent Quality
68 Pages Posted: 12 Dec 2016 Last revised: 19 Mar 2018
Date Written: December 2016
To study how governments can improve the quality of patent screening, we develop an integrative framework incorporating four main policy instruments: patent office examination, pre- and post-grant fees, and challenges in the courts. We show that examination and pre grant fees are complementary, and that pre-grant fees screen more effectively than post-grant fees. Simulations of the model, calibrated on U.S. patent and litigation data, indicate that patenting is socially excessive and the patent office does not effectively weed out low quality applications. We use the calibrated model to quantify the welfare effects of various counterfactual policy reforms.
Keywords: courts, innovation, litigation, patent fees, patents, screening
JEL Classification: D82, K41, L24, O31, O34, O38
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation