Business Interests are Finally a Focus at the USPTO!  

POSTED BY Bruce Story AT 2:57 P.M. JULY 14, 2010

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The newly published USPTO 2010-2015 Strategic Plan is the first strategic document from the USPTO that demonstrates that someone who has used IP as a global business asset is in charge! No wonder, as the new Director of the USPTO, David Kappos, comes with 20 years of experience managing IP at IBM.

Download the new Strategic Plan from Draft USPTO Strategic Plan for FY 2010-2015.

A comparison of the newly published USPTO 2010-2015 Strategic Plan Draft to the previous administration's 2007-2012 Strategic Plan is a study in contrasts.

Whereas the 2007-2012 Strategic Plan is inwardly focused, the 2010-2015 plan is outside-stakeholder focused. The new plan focuses on supporting national competitiveness by trying to achieve more timely and higher quality allowed patents.

Three key actions are called for:

  1. Adopt more private sector business practices and market-driven services for patent application processing.
  2. Re-engineer USPTO operational processes: implement compact prosecution initiatives, overhaul examiner production system, prioritize incoming work and increase international work sharing.
  3. Implement a sustainable funding model for operations.

Selected Plan Contrasts


2007-2012 Plan as implemented

2010-2015 Plan

Optimize Quality

Patent quality measured by internal allowance compliance rate - already at 96.5% in 2006

Recognition that outside stakeholders view quality differently than USPTO internal metrics. Will re-engineer its patent quality measurement and management program based on input from outside stakeholders.

Optimize Timeliness

To improve timeliness - hire more examiners

To improve timeliness - give examiners IT tools for better access to prior art (like industry has) and work with other patent offices so as to not duplicate searches and basic examinations. Give applicants choices for quicker examinations. Establish a national examiner workforce.

Optimize Quality and Timeliness

Blame applicants for poor applications that clog backlog

Give applicants incentives to reduce unnecessary applications and provide choices for quicker examinations.

The USPTO is soliciting comments to this draft plan at until August 2, 2010.

The final plan will be published by the end of September, 2010.

TAGS: Bruce Story | Regulation and Legislation
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