OECD Patent Statistics Manual

image of OECD Patent Statistics Manual

This 2009 edition of the OECD Patent Statistics Manual takes stock of the recent developments in the field. It provides guiding principles for the use of patent data in the context of S&T measurement, and recommendations for the compilation and interpretation of patent indicators in this context. It aims to show what patent statistics can and cannot be used for, and how to count patents in order to maximise information on S&T activities while minimising statistical noise and biases. Finally, it describes how patent data can be used in the analysis of a wide array of topics related to technical change and patenting activity including industry-science linkages, patenting strategies by companies, internationalisation of research, and indicators on the value of patents.

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Patents as Statistical Indicators of Science and Technology

The statistical properties of patent data are determined by their legal characteristics and by their economic implementation, as these influence which inventions are protected, by whom, what information is disclosed (hence made accessible to statisticians), how important patents are for industries, etc. This chapter provides an overview of the legal and economic foundations of patents. It describes the basic concepts necessary for the use of patent as indicators of science and technology (S&T).

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