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Julian Morris headshot

Senior Scholar

Before joining ICLE, Julian was Vice President of Research at Reason Foundation. Prior to that he was Executive Director of International Policy Network, a London-based think tank which he co-founded. Before that, he ran the environment and technology program at the Institute of Economic Affairs. He has also been a visiting professor in the Department of International Studies at the University of Buckingham (UK).

Dirk Auer headshot

Director of Competition Policy

Dirk Auer manages ICLE’s work on competition and antitrust issues in the United States, the United Kingdom, Europe, and abroad. Dirk joined ICLE as a Senior Fellow in October 2018 and was promoted to his current position in January 2022.

Antitrust

Antitrust Innovation Patents

TL;DR

Do Injunctions for Patents Promote or Impede Innovation?

Over the past 15 years, court decisions have weakened patent protections in the US. While some academics support such weakening, the evidence suggests that it may be having a detrimental effect on innovation.

Background…

Some academics argue that patent holders tend to charge excessive license fees to firms that implement their inventions, thereby impeding downstream innovation. The courts have responded by weakening the enforcement of patents in various ways, including by denying patent holders permanent injunctions. 

But

By making it more difficult for patent holders to obtain injunctions, courts have effectively reduced the incentive for firms to invest in primary inventions. This has arguably had a stronger negative effect on overall rates of innovation. 

Read the full explainer here.