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Intellectual Property and Innovation Protection by Rémi Lallement

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4How Companies Use Intellectual Property

The number of ways in which companies use intellectual property keeps increasing. At first sight, they may be broadly classed into two main groups. A set of relatively classic uses can be contrasted with more recent practices well beyond the traditional role of innovation protection based on the right to exclude. We can distinguish between traditional uses that involve defending an already defined area so that it yields a sort of monopoly rent and uses which are more related to evolving strategies based on expansion or diversification. Corbel [COR 07] added another distinction to this dichotomy between a logic of exclusion and a logic of cooperation. The junction of this double series of oppositions allowed this author to outline a four-group classification (Figure 4.1), which mostly applies to patents but may also be partially relevant for other intellectual property tools. Somewhat restructured, this classification helps us distinguish between defensive, licensing, cooperative and movement strategy.

4.1. Defensive strategy

The first situation mainly corresponds to the traditional objective of defending innovation in a narrow sense, namely to ensure one can ward off the risk posed by counterfeiting or the infringement of rights, both preventively and repressively. In this case, the entitled party wants to ensure that they can produce goods and services that include the protected knowledge and obtain income after they have been put ...

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