The Impact of Including Standards-Related Documentation in Patent Prior Art: Evidence from an EPO Policy Change

17 Pages Posted: 16 Jul 2020

See all articles by Rudi Bekkers

Rudi Bekkers

Eindhoven University of Technology (TUE)

Arianna Martinelli

Scuola Superiore Sant'Anna di Pisa

Federico Tamagni

Scuola Superiore Sant'Anna di Pisa

Date Written: June 23, 2020

Abstract

It is crucial that patent offices grant protection only to those inventions that are novel and non-obvious. In 2004, the European Patent Office (EPO) made the unique move to systematically extend its prior art database by including documents shared among members of standard-setting organisations, but not made available to the general audience. This paper investigates the effects of this policy change. We find that it worked thanks to a significant reduction in granting rates rather than reducing the scope of granted patents. Our study demonstrates how a targeted approach can improve the quality of the patent granting process.

Keywords: Quality of patent process, Technological standards, Policy evaluation, Diff-in-diff-in-diff estimation, Patent scope

JEL Classification: O30, O34, O32, L15, C21

Suggested Citation

Bekkers, Rudi and Martinelli, Arianna and Tamagni, Federico, The Impact of Including Standards-Related Documentation in Patent Prior Art: Evidence from an EPO Policy Change (June 23, 2020). Research Policy, Vol. 49, No. 7, 2020, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3633822

Rudi Bekkers (Contact Author)

Eindhoven University of Technology (TUE) ( email )

Den Dolech 3, PO Box 513, Room IPO 2.40
Eindhoven, 5600MB
Netherlands

HOME PAGE: http://home.ieis.tue.nl/rbekkers/

Arianna Martinelli

Scuola Superiore Sant'Anna di Pisa ( email )

Biblioteca Scuola Superiore Sant'Anna
Piazza Martiri della Liberta, n. 33
Pisa, 56127
Italy

Federico Tamagni

Scuola Superiore Sant'Anna di Pisa ( email )

Institute of Economics
Piazza Martiri della Liberta, n. 33
Pisa, Pisa 56127
Italy

Do you have a job opening that you would like to promote on SSRN?

Paper statistics

Downloads
20
Abstract Views
146
PlumX Metrics