Patent Japan

Tuesday, August 29, 2006

Committee on Inventive Step

On August 29, 2006, Nikkan-Kogyo Shimbun posted an article which said that a survey committee on inventive step is established under JPO on the same date. (This is a follow-up of my previous report.) 

The committee is composed of nine experts from the Japan Patent Attorney Association, the Supreme Court, universities, and so on.

Matters to be surveyed are,
(i) statistical surveys of examination/appeal cases which were filed and decided all in EPO, USPTO and JPO, and analyses on the cases to which contrary decisions were made among these Offices,
(ii) comparisons on the methodology of inventive step (nonobviousness) in major jurisprudences, and
(iii) questionnaires to companies, universities, and patent law firms upon the methodology/level of inventive step (nonobviousness) in major countries.

Inventive step has been and is still one of the most hotly debated issues in this world. (Refer, for example, to the situations in the US (by courtesy of Mr. Dennis Crouch) or UK.)

It is expected that the survey results, which are supposed to be compiled by the end of May 2007, will be presented at the Trilateral Meeting as basic materials for future discussion.

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