Determining the future success of your inventive pursuit

If you have patented your differentiating technology then maybe you can determine its future success:

In the paper “Discovery of factors influencing patent value based on machine learning in patents in the field of nanotechnology” by Scott D. Bass Æ Lukasz A. Kurgan Scientometrics (2010) 82:217–241 this proposition was tested.

Patents reflect technological change by representing inventive output in a manner that is standardised in different fields, countries and time periods. This enables the use of patent analytical techniques to reveal the following:
(i) inventors approach(es) in light of the economic policies at the time;
(ii) extent of commercialisation of academic pursuits (e.g. was the patent assigned/licensed); and
(iii) outcome of the technology in terms of patent value.

This study sampled the field of nanotechnology patents and identified some interesting trends (e.g. common features of high value patents) that could be used to predict future value of nanotechnology patents.

Of interest, patents with a higher probability of performing well were:
(i) patents with a greater number of outgoing citations revealing their scientific sources; and
(ii) lodged by inventors who:
a. previously had valuable patents in place; and
b. had a longer history of inventing.

You would think it would follow that research institutions such as universities should have more patents of high value. However, there are no universities or research institutions in the Top 100 PCT Applicant list in 2009.


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