Today, Under Secretary of Commerce for Intellectual Property and Director of the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) David Kappos addressed the Brookings Institution’s Center for Technology Innovation, outlining how comprehensive patent reform, signed into law by President Obama two weeks ago today, impacts American innovation, American jobs and American leadership. Representing the most significant overhaul of the U.S. patent system in a generation, the America Invents Act (AIA) transforms how patents are obtained, challenged, and valued in acquisition, licensing, and litigation settlement discussions.
In the centuries since the first patent examiner—Thomas Jefferson—reviewed and granted the first U.S. patent, our nation has observed sweeping revolutions in the pace of innovation—but with no comprehensive legislative adjustment in patent policy.
By building out the world’s only 21st century Patent and Trademark Office, equipped to manage the demands of a globalized economy, this new law enables a better resourced USPTO to grant intellectual property rights with greater speed, greater quality, greater clarity and greater enforceability. It also advances the President’s overall strategy of deploying American innovation to build businesses and build jobs.
By cutting costs for independent inventors and entrepreneurs, issuing patents that obviate expensive court challenges, and by providing tools to reach patent decisions three-times faster than in the past, the new law topples many existing structural impediments to business and technological growth.
With greater efficiency built into the American IP system, investors have greater confidence in the American patent. In turn, early-stage startups, independent inventors, and even larger companies can leverage that certainty to develop their technologies faster, hire employees sooner, grow their businesses to be stronger, and sell their products more widely.
This historic new patent law is therefore a down payment on the aggressive jobs agenda President Obama has outlined in the American Jobs Act. By shrinking the gap between ideation and the bottom line, companies are able to leverage the resources required to move molecules to the marketplace, spurring the sort of business and economic growth necessary to out-innovate our economic competitors in Brazil, Russia, India and China. Remarks