One of these lies in just how the world manages the creation and ownership of inventions and ideas. A protectionist strategy to Invent Help Patent Information was created to protect and prolong the lifecycle of existing technologies, and permit innovators to capture the profits from their creations. In a paper published with colleagues from universities in Germany and India, we examined how this also makes it more difficult for new and more sustainable technologies to be developed and adopted. That explains why now there are other approaches being used to move key sectors to more sustainable systems and end this status quo.

Electric car manufacturer Tesla, continues to be doing just that. Tesla CEO Elon Musk “shocked” the world in 2014 as he announced that his company was joining the open source movement and giving away its patents for free. It is essential to comprehend the rationale here. Why would a company which had worked so hard to build up and protect its technology looking at the global car manufacturer competitors suddenly give its technology away free of charge?

Tesla initially created a patent portfolio to guard its technology. However, Tesla’s concern that it would be overwhelmed once established car makers ramped up their creation of electric cars never came to pass. Instead, it saw the electric car market stagnate at under 1% of total vehicle sales. So Tesla changed its strategy from trying to prevent others from building electric cars to attempting to encourage them into the market.

Part of the reasoning here is when more electric cars are built, then more battery recharging stations will likely be built too. This could make electric cars be a little more visible, along with a more conventional choice. Tesla believes an open intellectual property strategy can strengthen instead of diminish its position by building the dimensions of the electrical car market, and as a result, build their own share in the total automotive market.

This kind of careful handling of Inventhelp Patent Referral Services at company level, supported by policy-level awareness, can become a powerful way to support the same kinds of transitions to more sustainable technologies in other industries too.

Energy supply faces a multitude of difficulties: the depletion of natural resources; air pollution and greenhouse gas emissions; nuclear risks; and security of supply. The water supply sector is restricted by water scarcity, pollutants, extreme environmental events such as flooding and costs associated with supplying water to communities in poor countries and remote communities. The agri-food sector, meanwhile, is under pressure to sustainably produce more food and also to address malnutrition in poor countries.

For such industries to navigate a path around these issues, new knowledge and also the innovations that follow is going to be essential. As well as in knowledge economies, intellectual property can either be an enabler or perhaps an inhibitor.

In the event the ownership of intellectual property is fragmented in an industry, it can slow down technology innovation and uptake, such as within the electronics industry where multiple players own complementary patents. However, firms can instead start their innovation processes and move away from jealously guarded, internal cultures, where intellectual property is used to briaac and prolong lifecycles. This change may see knowledge sharing that leads to accelerated innovation cycles and a more rapid uptake of sustainable alternatives within a sector: just what Tesla was hoping for in electric vehicles.

This method to intellectual property, so-called “open IP”, is well advanced and mature in the software industry and healthcare. It provides given access to life-saving medicines to huge numbers of people, especially in developing countries through patent pools, like the Medicine Patent Pool. This kind of project relies upon multinational pharmaceutical companies sharing their Prototype Service Inventhelp, but small companies can also play a strategic roles in creating these new, more sustainable systems, and it’s not every about open IP.

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