Intellectual Property in Common Law and Civil Law
Show Less

Intellectual Property in Common Law and Civil Law

Edited by Toshiko Takenaka

Drawing together the views and experiences of scholars and lawyers from the United States, Europe and Asia, this book examines how different characteristics embedded in national IP systems stem from differences in the fundamental legal principles of the two traditions. It questions whether these elements are destined to remain diverged, and tries to identify common ground that might facilitate a form of harmonization.
Buy Book in Print
Show Summary Details
You do not have access to this content

Chapter 1: Towards a history of patent law

Brad Sherman


Patent history is a subject that is still largely waiting to be written. Potentially, a history of ‘patents’ encompasses a number of different factors including patent administration, the professionals that work within the patent system, and the concepts, rules, and procedures that make up and inform patent law. There are also a number of different approaches that could be taken when writing a patent history ranging from comparative examinations and sector specific studies through to more political or theoretically informed histories. To date, the bulk of the scholarship that has looked at the history of patents has focused on the patent system as an economic tool and on the role that the patent system plays in stimulating (or hindering) research and development. Until recently, most historical accounts have tended to see patents as instruments that are broadly adaptable to economic forces, and whose internal tensions and inconsistencies can be deciphered as effects of conflicts and shifts in economic interests. While this instrumentalist vision has produced some engaging historical accounts of the political and economic effect of patents there has, at least until recently, been much less attention given to the legal aspects of patents.

You are not authenticated to view the full text of this chapter or article.

Elgaronline requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books or journals. Please login through your library system or with your personal username and password on the homepage.

Non-subscribers can freely search the site, view abstracts/ extracts and download selected front matter and introductory chapters for personal use.

Your library may not have purchased all subject areas. If you are authenticated and think you should have access to this title, please contact your librarian.

Further information

or login to access all content.