Patents and Patent Policy

A patent is the legal right of an inventor to exclude others from making or using a particular invention. This right is sometimes termed an ‘intellectual property right’ and is viewed as an incentive for innovation. This article surveys the evidence on patent effectiveness in encouraging innovation and reviews the current controversies in patent policy.

From Journal (Oxford Review of Economic Policy), published on 28-12-2007


  • Bronwyn Hall


  • Innovation research


  • Intellectual property

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