Strong Patents Make Wealthy Nations

July 21, 2016

Strong patents make wealthy nations. That is the conclusion of a new paper by Stanford University Professor and intellectual property expert Stephen Haber. Haber presents data from his economic and historical analysis demonstrating a clear relationship between the strength of enforceable patent rights and the level of economic development across countries. He writes simply:

“…there are no wealthy countries with weak patent rights, and there are no poor countries with strong patent rights.”

Haber, Stephen, “Patents and the Wealth of Nations,” George Mason Law Review, Summer 2016

Haber further notes that three generations of economic historians have agreed that strong U.S. patent rights – rights specifically enshrined in our Constitution – have played a key role in driving our country’s dramatic industrial development. He concludes:

“…there is a causal relationship between the strength of patent rights and innovation.”

With such an important role in our nation’s innovative, industrial and economic development, we need to be strengthening, not endangering our patent system. That is why Congress must reject patent-weakening legislation, such as H.R.9, the Innovation Act, and S.1137, the PATENT Act.

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