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The Disciplinary Effect of Post-Grant Review

Markus Nagler and Stefan Sorg
Additional contact information
Markus Nagler: LMU Munich
Stefan Sorg: MPI for Innovation and Competition

No 155, Rationality and Competition Discussion Paper Series from CRC TRR 190 Rationality and Competition

Abstract: We study the causal impact of invalidating marginally valid patents during post-grant opposition at the European Patent Office on affected inventors\' subsequent patenting. We exploit exogenous variation in invalidation by leveraging the participation of a patent\'s original examiner in the opposition division as an instrument. We find a disciplinary effect of invalidation: Affected inventors file 20% fewer patent applications in the decade after the decision. This effect is entirely driven by a reduction in low-quality filings, i.e., filings that examiners associate with prior art that threatens the application\'s novelty or inventive step. We do not observe shifts into national patenting.

Keywords: inventors; marginal patents; patent invalidation; patent opposition; postgrant review; epo; innovation (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: O31 O34 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-eur, nep-ino and nep-ipr
Date: 2019-05-24
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