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Research: The functions of patents in our societies: innovation, markets, and new firms
Executive summary and key messages of "The functions of patents in our societies: innovation, markets, and new firms" by Prof. Alfonso Gambardella (Head of the Department of Management & Technology of Bocconi University, Milan and Fellow of the Strategic Management Society and a member of the Center for Economic and Policy Research (CEPR), London). Click on the title above to read the executive summary. Full paper available at SSRN: http://ssrn.com/abstract=3789554
Research: Patentability of Computer Programs in Europe
by Yulia Borisova
The subject matter of this paper is focused on software inventions, which emerged in the practice of European Patent Office under the umbrella of “computer program having a technical character”. This concept is built without a proper definition of “computer program” and remains insufficiently researched. However, such patents are already granted. The main questions examined in the paper include the following: • What does Article 52 of the European Patent Convention understand under unpatentable “programs for computers as such”? • Are there any elements in a computer program that are not excluded by Article 52 and thus can qualify as inventions? • What is the role and the meaning of “further technical effect” that must be produced by a computer program in order to be patentable?
Research: Judicial determination of FRAND royalties in the ICT sector: should courts determine FRAND royalties and, if so, how? Principles, methods and challenges
by Rita García-Bennett
To ensure accessibility to standards, some standard setting organisations require SEP holders to commit to license on fair, reasonable and non-discriminatory (FRAND) terms. These terms are subject to different interpretation, which gives rise to legal uncertainty and increased litigation. And whilst court decisions have helped clarify the meaning of these terms, judicial FRAND determination has been rare in Europe, where courts tend to shy away from determining FRAND royalties. This paper discusses the principles taken into account and the methods generally applied by the courts to determine FRAND royalties. It advocates for more guidance on valuationon methods, including from governmental agencies and the judiciary, and argues that judicial FRAND royalty determinations can benefit the licensing system, albeit methods and access to data, including regarding SEP essentiality, need improvement.