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Patents

2012

Cornell University Law School

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Maturing Patent Theory From Industrial Policy To Intellectual Property, Oskar Liivak Apr 2012

Maturing Patent Theory From Industrial Policy To Intellectual Property, Oskar Liivak

Cornell Law Faculty Publications

We have always known that technological progress is important and this country has always aimed to promote it. A large part of that responsibility has fallen on the shoulders of the patent system. Embarrassingly, despite over two hundred years of experience, we still do not actually know if the patent system helps or hinders technological progress. This Essay argues that the problem is not the patent system but rather patent theory. Patent theory suffers from three linked problems: exceptionalness, indeterminacy, and animosity. First, patent law is seen as a necessarily unique exception to the overall market economy. By artificially making ...