Industrial Property Information
The Role of Patent Information
The four systems for patents, utility models, designs and trademarks are referred to collectively as the "industrial property system". These systems are supported by industrial property information, beginning with patent information.
If these systems are to function effectively, it is essential that information on the rights they protect receives adequate distribution and is properly used.
The illustration to the upper left shows the cycle of intellectual creation. The intent of the industrial property system is to achieve the development of industry through energizing this cycle, which consists of the following steps: research and development obtaining a patent or other right recovery of development costs through marketing or licensing the patented product further research and development.
Information on patents and other industrial property rights has the following characteristics and uses (see illustration above right).
1. An index of leading-edge technology
Japan's patent system is based on the first-to-file system, meaning that patent applications for technology developed by enterprises, universities and research institutes is submitted to the JPO at the earliest possible stage. This technology is then disclosed to the public after a set period of time has elapsed. This is information on the very latest leading-edge technology, which enables the user to quickly grasp the latest technology trends.
2. An organized and valuable resource of technology information
Since it is obligatory to recite the details of the invention in the application documents, and patent information is arranged via a classification system that is used worldwide according to its technical content, it is easy to obtain organized information about technology simply by accessing patent information.
3. Rights information
The Official Gazettes published by the JPO serve as rights certificates which indicate the scope of the monopoly right that has been recognized.
We expect that your full and effective use of industrial property rights information, for example to grasp the trends in patented technology in your field of interest, will vitalize your own cycle of intellectual creation.