Sunday, February 19, 2017
Exhibit Hall (Hynes Convention Center)
Koichi Sumikura, National Graduate Institute for Policy Studies, Tokyo, Japan
Background: Intellectual property (IP) system, such as protection of patent or regulation on secrecy such as trade secrets or kow-hows, contributes to implementation of innovation in corporations because of its function of providing appropriability of the profits caused by innovation. Some of the results of R&D are patented and lead to innovation, while others are applied for patent or actually patented but never lead to innovation because of cancellation of the project on the way. Then, to what extent are patent applications leading to innovation? Methods: We carried out an enquiry to Japanese corporations and asked about the relationship between IP and innovation. The enquiry was carried out from March 3rd to March 20th, 2015. Target corporations were 250 large companies and 250 small and medium companies, in which 88 responded. For comparison of larger and smaller corporations, the answers from the 39 companies with the capital more than 10 billion yen and the 40 companies with that less than 100 million yen were compared. Results: We asked respondents to fill the percentage so as to the total of A (applied for patent and not lead to innovation), B (applied for patent and lead to innovation) and C (innovation, not related with patent nor patent application) being 100%. Percentage of patent application is the higher in the larger corporations, which is more than 80%. In the smaller corporations, the percentage of non-patent innovation is the higher. The ratio of the patent applications leading to innovation to those not leading to innovation is the higher in the smaller corporations. We also asked the respondents to fill the percentage so as to the total of patent application and secrecy being 100%. As the ratio of A+B to C and that of patent application to secrecy are similar in every class, the innovation not related with patent nor patent application is supposed to contain any secrecy. The smaller corporations are supposed to implement innovation by secrecy rather than by patenting, in order to make best use of a limited financial resource. Conclusions: By carrying out our survey towards Japanese corporations, we found that the percentage of non-patent innovation is the higher in the smaller corporations. In addition, we also found the followings. Among the factors affecting implementation of innovation, IP strategy is regarded as the more critical one in the larger corporations. The hampering effect of IP issues on collaboration with others for R&D is the less in the smaller corporations.