Patents for Development

Patents for Development

Improved Patent Information Disclosure and Access for Incremental Innovation

Nefissa Chakroun

This book investigates whether it is possible to execute the disclosed technologies just by reading the patent application. Nefissa Chakroun argues that while TRIPS Agreement obliges inventors to disclose full and complete disclosure, patent information users lack the capacity to fully utilise such information for their economic development. The book offers a critical analysis of the disclosure requirements of the patent system as well as an in-depth examination of the ways in accessing and retrieving patent information. Chakroun articulates proposals for strengthening the disclosure and methods for enhancing retrieval and exploitation of the technological knowledge, including an integrated policy on how patent information could be better utilised for development

Chapter 6: Transferring technologies utilising patent information

Nefissa Chakroun

Subjects: development studies, law and development, law - academic, intellectual property law


The hypothesis of this book posits the exploitation of technologies disclosed in patent documents as a means of achieving development based on cumulative research and incremental innovation. In so far as clear and complete disclosure of the invention implies a right to patent information – which is the basis for exploiting such information – this chapter argues that improving the development function of patent information could be attained through enhancing patent information users’ capacity to utilise such information. It focuses on exploitation of patent documents in the public domain, as a source of transfer of technologies. Discussing the non-infringing use of technologies as a result of the natural expiry, invalidation or cancellation of the patent requires setting out the framework for what can be considered as technologies in the public domain. This could be achieved by means of a ‘freedom-to-operate report’. In so doing, the public domain would be considered as a source of technology transfer, which is defined as follows: a series of processes enabling and facilitating flows of skills, knowledge, ideas, know-how, and technology among different stakeholders such as university and research institutions, international organisations, [international governmental organisations, non-governmental organisations] … private sector entities and individuals, as well as international technology transfer among countries.

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