Losing the lead: Patents and the disclosure requirement

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URI: http://nbn-resolving.de/urn:nbn:de:bsz:21-opus-20528
Dokumentart: WorkingPaper
Date: 2005
Source: Tübinger Diskussionsbeiträge der Wirtschaftswissenschaftlichen Fakultät ; 296
Language: English
Faculty: 6 Wirtschafts- und Sozialwissenschaftliche Fakultät
Department: Wirtschaftswissenschaften
DDC Classifikation: 330 - Economics
Keywords: Patenterteilung , Patentprüfung
Other Keywords: Patenting decision , Secrecy , Disclosure requirement , Technology adoption , Patent height
License: http://tobias-lib.uni-tuebingen.de/doku/lic_ohne_pod.php?la=de http://tobias-lib.uni-tuebingen.de/doku/lic_ohne_pod.php?la=en
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This paper analyzes the patenting decision of a successful inventor in a model of dynamic technology adoption with asymmetric firms. We show that the extent of the inventor's technological headstart is decisive for his patenting behavior. The overall patenting effect consists of two parts, a protective and a disclosure effect. If the technological headstart is high the negative disclosure effect may overcompensate the positive protective effect of a patent. In this case the inventor prefers secrecy. Welfare considerations show that a patent may be socially desirable even though it delays the first adoption of a new technology.

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