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The European Patent Office and emerging technologies : how does the administrative capacity at the European Patent Office relate to the quality of the search- and examination process in the sector of biotechnology?

Buehs, Stephanie (2011) The European Patent Office and emerging technologies : how does the administrative capacity at the European Patent Office relate to the quality of the search- and examination process in the sector of biotechnology?

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Abstract:In this thesis, I focus on the administrative capacities at the European Patent Office (EPO) and study their relation to the efficiency of the search- and examination (S&E) process of patents. It is often argued that the availability and training of the personnel, in particular examiners, is an important precondition for patent quality and therefore also the quality of the process in which patents are issued. The focus lies on the sector of biotechnology, as this is a relatively new, emerging technology field and therefore already poses a lot of challenges to the EPO. It will be interesting to see how the EPO has dealt with this technology field in terms of administrative changes, especially as the influx of patents in general is steadily growing. Has the EPO adapted to these changing circumstances? With this recent development in mind, the aim of my research will be to answer the question: How does the administrative capacity at the EPO relate to the quality of the search- and examination process in the sector of biotechnology? In order to approach the main research aim, a longitudinal design will be used, analysing statistical data for the biotechnology sector from a time period of 13 years, ranging from 1997 to 2009. The main finding of this research is that there is a positive relationship between the administrative capacity at the EPO and the quality of the S&E process in the sector of biotechnology. In the years from 1997 to 2009, as the administrative capacities at the EPO have improved, so has the quality of the S&E process.
Item Type:Essay (Bachelor)
Faculty:BMS: Behavioural, Management and Social Sciences
Subject:88 social and public administration
Programme:European Studies BSc (56627)
Link to this item:http://purl.utwente.nl/essays/61542
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