Since 2017, the European Patent Office (EPO) has been conducting its own Academic Research Program. The aim of this initiative is to encourage scientific works, which highlight the interaction between intellectual property sphere (IP) and the European economy.
Within Academic Research Program, grants will be given to projects studying the following thematic areas:
– Determining the impact of patents on innovation;
– The role of intellectual property in technology exchange, commercialization and / or investment;
– Patent services and intermediaries;
– Patents and IP- bundle;
– Patents and groundbreaking technology (artificial intelligence, blockchain, 3D etc.);
– The impact of public policies and regulations on the use of patents by SMEs and PROs in Europe;
– Patents and technologies for mitigating climate change;
– Expanded use of PATSTAT (Worldwide Patent Statistical Database), patent search and analysis (eg., classification, IP-related open data potential).
Over the three years the competition existed, the EPO received 154 proposals for new research projects in the field of IP from 21 European countries, 11 of which received grants. In 2020, the EPO offers grants in the amount of 300 thousand euros, and additional projects can be selected for support in the amount of up to 100 thousand euros.
In connection with a global COVID-19 pandemic, EPO extends registration deadline – up to June 30, 2020. Proposals may be made by individual research institutes or groups of institutes. Major researches may be conducted by institutes located anywhere in the world, provided that the project coordinator is situated in the member state of the European Patent Organization.
Given the current difficult world economic situation, it will be interesting to see the results of the European competition, which tentatively will be presented in October, 2020. Compared with previous years, it is highly likely we will be observing a shift in research priorities to more applied areas (as far as possible, based on the general theme of the Program).
Further information from the EPO regarding the Academic Research Program can be found following https://www.epo.org/news-events/news/2020/2020042.html
The results of studies already completed can be found at :