Patent classification


We forget sometimes that the world of patents can appear complex and daunting to those who do not have the time or resources to dedicate to patent searching or to analysing patent information. Happily, here in Europe, innovators can prosper from a network of professional centres that help them to maximise the impact of their […]

EPO at the forefront of renewable energy technology

Recently, the EPO announced that the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) has launched a joint initiative with the EPO to provide access to information on renewable energy technologies. Thanks to the International Standards and Patents in Renewable Energy (INSPIRE) platform, anyone can now have access to the world’s largest collection of global renewable energy standards […]

2014, another successful year for the EPO

As the year draws to a close, it is time to look back on the achievements of the last twelve months. First, 2014 can be regarded as a very successful year for the EPO, as in many areas we reached our best ever performances. In terms of filings, we expect a 3% – 3.5% increase […]

Europe and China in strategic partnership for patents

It comes as a surprise to some that the relationship between the EPO and the Patent Office of China (SIPO) started decades ago. Ever since Deng Xiaoping began to open up China and its economy at the end of the 1970s, numerous initiatives have been taken by the Chinese authorities. One of them was to […]

International harmonisation in progress

For many years, industry has been calling for international harmonisation of the patent system – an understandable demand that has been further amplified by the accelerating pace of globalisation. Harmonisation can take various forms, focusing on substantive law and/or technical cooperation, and can be discussed in bilateral or multilateral frameworks. Whatever the approach may be, […]

Au revoir, David

Last week, David Kappos took his leave from the US Patent and Trademark Office, after serving as its Director since August 2009. I would like to take this opportunity to congratulate him very warmly on his outstanding achievements. In less than four years, David carried out a major programme of change at the USPTO, leading […]

The Cooperative Patent Classification – a decisive step forward in patent harmonisation

This is my first blog post in 2013, so let me start by wishing you all the very best for the new year. 2012 ended with the historic decisions of the EU on the unitary patent package. For the EPO, 2013 will be marked in particular by the 40th anniversary of the signing of the […]