Wednesday, September 01, 2004

There they go again: patent citation studies

The European Commission's Research DG has published a call for tenders for a study on highly-cited patents, highly-cited publications and research networks.

This study forms part of the work to be performed under ASSIST in the area of economic analysis, statistics and indicators on science and technology and as such will contribute to implementing the European Science and Technology Foresight and Indicators Knowledge Sharing Platform.

In a knowledge-based society, scientific and technological knowledge plays a key role for innovation and growth. In recent years, a number of companies have established research and development labs in close proximity to renowned public research organisations, expecting positive spillover effects from the external research, the basic argument being the impact of close proximity to important research. On the other hand, modern information and communication allows access to new knowledge almost everywhere. The basic question underlying this study is the extent to which one or the other argument is valid and to what extent networks and geographic proximity matter in the innovation process. Patent applications are a particularly rich source for analysing prior knowledge that lead to the inventions or innovations protected by patents. In this respect, the patents cited in a patent application indicate existing technological know-how that has helped develop innovation. Equally interesting is the NPL listed in patent applications.

For further information, please contact:

European Commission
Directorate-General Research
Attn: Xabier Goenaga
SDME 9/77
B-1049 Brussels
Tel +32-2 296 1434
Fax +32-2 296 7026


Better put out the bat signal for Edlyn Simmons and Nancy Lambert to put down this latest fire of stupidity. However, as Edlyn stated:

Evaluating an individual patent can't be done without knowledge about whether the patent is a grape or a watermelon. But
business people like easy, quantitative answers, ...

[so here we go again, but refer to

Edlyn S. Simmons and Nancy Lambert. "Patent Statistics: Comparing Grapes and Watermelons" In Recent Advances in Chemical Information, Proceedings of the 1991 Montreux International Chemical Information Conference & Exhibition, H. Collier, Ed, (Royal Society of Chemistry, Cambridge; CRC Press) pp 33-78 (1992).

Simmons, Edlyn S.; Lambert, Nancy. "Comparing grapes and watermelons." ChemTech 23 (6), 1993, p. 51-59. ]


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