Solutions for the U.S. Patent System
WIPO’s World Intellectual Property Indicators report for 2019 is eye-opening. In 2018, the U.S. saw a 1.6% decline in the number of patent applications filed, which is the first decline since 2009. Meanwhile, patent filings grew by more than 5% worldwide. Patent filings grew by double digits in China (11.6%). The EPO saw nearly a 5% increase. Even low-and middle-income countries are seeing substantial increases in patent filings: Pakistan (+27.8%), Philippines (+26.7%), Uzbekistan (+17.5%), Morocco (+14.1%) and Vietnam (+12.8%) recorded particularly rapid growth in 2018. Meanwhile, U.S. applicants filed the largest number of applications abroad (230,085) in 2018, which is more than double third-place Germany (106,753) and more than triple fourth place Korea (69,459). These patent filing statistics seem to confirm what those in the monetization, patent litigation and venture capital business have been reporting for several years – innovators and funding are shifting away from the U.S. After two days of discussions during this conference, this roundtable discussion will focus on the core reasons for what appears to be a shift away from the U.S. patent system and the solutions policy makers and legislators can and should adopt.