IGIR Lunch seminar by Niccolo Galli
Patent Aggregation and Innovation: A Competition Law (Re)Appraisal.
Patent aggregation, namely the use of patent portfolios for non-manufacturing purposes, is a rising practice in the electrical engineering industry. However, the complexity and distance of this phenomenon from traditional patent exercises prevent a clear assessment of its impact on innovation. On one side, patent aggregation may serve resource-constrained inventors to bridge the s.c. valley of death, namely the gap between the invention and its successful commercialization. In fact, insofar patent aggregation brings efficiencies in licensing or litigation and conveys liquidity to inventors it may spur innovation. However, on the other side, patent aggregation might also unduly tax technological developments by enforcing otherwise dormant patents. Building on existing economics and legal scholarship, Niccolò researches the net effects of patent aggregation on innovation and assesses the European competition law treatment of patent aggregation conducts. In particular, for the IGIR seminar, he will present its taxonomy of patent aggregation activities, together with preliminary findings on the empirical evidence of such activities in Europe.