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Patents summarizes four decades of pioneering research by F.M. Scherer on the economics of patent protection. This book is distinguished by concern for the role of patents in a global context and by thorough investigation into the utility of patent counts as instruments for measuring the magnitude and consequences of technological invention. The book also includes a detailed new introduction by F.M. Scherer. The seminal essays contained within the book are organized around three principal foci: how to identify and shape policies yielding optimal patent protection in domestic and international markets; using patent data to reveal important features of the economy; and interpreting the economic significance of patents as measures of innovation. Explored under the second focus are the relationships of patenting to firm size, market structure, demand, and how inventions flow through the economy to yield productivity gains. The third focus illuminates implications of the highly skewed distribution of individual patent values. Scholars working on innovation and science, technological change, and law and economics will find this an invaluable and interesting book. It will also appeal to practitioners involved in patent and antitrust matters.
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