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Patents and Academic Research: A State of the Art

Nicolas van Zeebroeck (), Bruno van Pottelsberghe de la Potterie and Dominique Guellec

No 08-013.RS, Working Papers CEB from ULB -- Universite Libre de Bruxelles

Abstract: The sharp increase in academic patenting over the past 20 years raises important issues regarding the generation and diffusion of academic knowledge. Three key questions may be raised in this respect: What is behind the surge in academic patenting? Does patenting affect the quality and quantity of universities' scientific output? Does the patent system limit the freedom to perform academic research? The present paper summarizes the existing literature on these issues. The evidence suggests that academic patenting has only limited effects on the direction, pace and quality of research. A virtuous cycle seems to characterise the patent-publication relationship. Secondly, scientific anti-commons show very little effects on academic researchers so far, limited to a few countries with weak or no research exemption regulations. In a nutshell, the evidence leads us to conclude that the benefits of academic patenting on research exceed their potential negative effects.

Keywords: Patent systems; Research Exemption; Academic Patenting. (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: O31 O34 O50 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-edu, nep-his, nep-ino, nep-ipr, nep-pr~, nep-knm and nep-sog
Date: 2008
References: View references in EconPapers View complete reference list from CitEc
Citations: View citations in EconPapers (9) Track citations by RSS feed

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Related works:
Working Paper: Patents and Academic Research: A State of the Art (2008)
Working Paper: Patents and academic research: a state of the art (2008)
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