OECD Science, Technology and Industry Working Papers

The OECD Directorate for Science, Technology and Innovation (STI) leads OECD research on the contribution of science, technology and industry to well-being and economic growth. STI Working Papers cover a broad range of topics including definition and measurement of science and technology indicators, global value chains, and research on policies to promote innovation. These technical or analytical working papers are prepared by staff or outside consultants to share early insights and elicit feedback.


Using Patents Data to Map Technical Change in Health-Related Areas

This document reports findings regarding the use of patents data for understanding various dimensions of technical change in health-related areas. Reported counts are based on “Triadic Patent Families”, that is sets of patents covering a single invention, filed altogether in Europe, Japan and the US. There were nearly 40 000 health-related patent families filed in the 1988-1995 period, which is 16% of the total number of patent families, with a majority (58%) of Medical Preparations (mainly drugs), followed by Surgery (13%), Media Devices (10%) and Prostheses (9%). The share of health patent inventors residing in the US is 56% (it is 35% in all families), EU is 27% (32% in all families), and Japan is 11% (28% in all families). The share of the US has been increasing between 1988 and 1995, whereas the share of Japan was shrinking. Internationalisation of research (measured by the share of patents with inventors residing in two or more different countries) has been growing steadily ...


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