The Role of Intellectual Property In SME Financing

I am today and tomorrow in Geneva participating in the WIPO-INSME International Training Program on the Role of Intellectual Property in Raising Finance by Small and Medium-Sized Enterprises.

In the words of Guriqbal Singh Jaiya, Director of the Small and Medium Size Enterprises Division at the WIPO, what we will be looking at these two days is the role of knowledge in finance from the intellectual property point of view.

The Danish PTO

We want the Danish business sector to take a stand. Whether or not the businesses wish to protect their innovations, they need to decide how the IPR should form part of their business. This requires that we take part in the development of the IPR area instead of just administering it. The Danish Patent and Trademark Office

My view: In the recent pre-reboot interview with Nicole Simon I said something to the effect that the interests of the “patent offices” are mostly in administering the existing laws and treaties and not necessarily thinking about what kind or kinds of intellectual property, if any, would serve the needs of those producing software as a result of their toils and troubles. My view of the statement above indicates that at least the Danish patent office does view matters a bit differently. This is an encouraging sign given the complexity and political nature of what may be needed to bring about a working solution for software and intellectual property. In addition, given that software today is being covered by patens, copyright, open source and proprietary knowledge, growing a business that centers around the creation of software needs to make good use of the existing tools and make sure that it includes an intellectual property strategy that holds against its competitors.

As already mentioned by Ben Voigt, the DKPTO does keep a weblog in Danish.

A bit of reading about software protection

This article published on the website of the WIPO may be old hat for some of the super-geeks, but for others it may provide useful reading. Another good read on the same subject that also includes a few links and additional information can be found on the website of CORDIS.

For preliminary prior art search search I recommend espacenet and the USPTO. Whatever you do, do read the small print, disclaimers and remember that terminology is in this field as important as syntax is in programming.