Josh Lerner relying on patent citation analysis in paper on business method patents
Josh Lerner has a new paper out: Financial Patent Quality: Finance
Patents After State Street
One can find references to patent citations:
In summary, our analysis generates several intriguing results, suggesting that finance patents are
problematic with respect to the citation of prior academic research. Overall, the finance patents
in our study cite less non-patent prior art of any type—even though examiners add more of these
citations to finance patents. Finance patents tend to cite fewer academic publications than do
non-finance patents, and this difference grows as we consider the leading journals. Even after
controlling for a number of variables and separating patents into assignee groups, finance patents
still appear weaker across the board with respect to non-patent prior art (and especially academic
citations) relative to the comparison groups. These findings raise substantial questions regarding
In Part III, we examine whether patents with more academic citations are more likely to
be litigated. We examine the propensity for patents to be litigated as a function of the
number of citations to prior non-patent art for finance patents and the comparison group.
The new paper cites:
Cotropia, Christopher A., Mark A. Lemley, and Bhaven Sampat. "Do Applicant Patent Citations
Matter?" Research Policy 42, no. 4 (2013): 844-854.
Jaffe, Adam B., Manuel Trajtenberg, and Michael S. Fogarty. "Knowledge Spillovers and Patent
Citations: Evidence from a Survey of Inventors." AEA Papers and Proceedings (May 2000):
Footnote 24 observes:
A natural question is whether examiners typically play an important role in non-patent prior art searches. Research
suggests that examiners are far less adept in identifying non-patent prior art relative to patent prior art. Lemley and
Sampat (2012, 820), for example, found that examiners accounted for under 10 percent of citations to non-patent
prior art in their issued patents, but provided over 40 percent of the citations for patent prior art. This discrepancy,
especially with respect to the recently established patentability status of business methods in the State Street
decision, is likely due to the far less formalized approach that must be taken to identify references in printed
publications relative to patents (Thomas 2001, 319). Cotropia et al. (2013) further found that examiner-added
citations are overwhelmingly used in rejections to narrow claims.
On whether Lerner's analysis as to citations has any significance, see
See also: https://ipcloseup.wordpress.com/2016/01/06/harvard-study-financial-patents-lag-in-quality-especially-npes/
***Separately, as of 7 Jan 2016 on Blawgsearch, for the week of 7 January, IPBiz is the number 1 IP Blawg (by Blawgsearch standards) and is ranked #69 overall). IPKat is number 5 on the IP list and ranked 127 overall.
general link: http://blawgsearch.justia.com/blogs/categories/intellectual-property-law
In ranking things, there are usually many metrics one can choose. In evaluating patents, Josh Lerner employs the metric of patent citations, although many people have questioned the value of this approach. In evaluating blogs, a frequent metric is simply to count traffic. The Blawgsearch approach analyzes how many people are actually seeking useful content in the blog.