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ISSN: 2375-4516

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Research Article

The Use of Patents to Assess National Innovation Systems: Evidences from Spanish Biotechnology

Antonio Hidalgo1*, Penas G2, Belda I3, Alonso A3, Marquina D3 and Santos A3

1Department of Business Administration, Universidad Politécnica de Madrid, 28006, Madrid, Spain

2Department of Utility Models, Designs and Semiconductors, Spanish Patent and Trademark Office, 28046, Madrid, Spain

3Department of Microbiology, Faculty of Biology, Complutense University of Madrid, 28040, Madrid, Spain

*Corresponding Author:
Dr. Antonio Hidalgo
Department of Business Administration
Universidad Politécnica de Madrid, 28006, Madrid, Spain
Tel/Fax: +34 913363094
E-mail: [email protected]

Received Date: May 05, 2014; Accepted Date: July 28, 2014; Published Date: August 04, 2014

Citation: Hidalgo A, Penas G, Belda I, Alonso A, Marquina D, et al. (2014) The Use of Patents to Assess National Innovation Systems: Evidences from Spanish Biotechnology. Intel Prop Rights 2:122. doi: 10.4172/2375-4516.1000122

Copyright: © 2014 Hidalgo A, et al. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.


Spain’s economy recorded a high rate of growth from the mid-1990s onwards. At the same time, the resources allocated to Research and Development (R&D) grew at a much faster pace than in other European Union (EU) countries. Spain’s growth recorded an average rate of 2.93% from the early 1990s to 2004. Over the same period, the average growth in the EU was 0.46%. This circumstance, together with several sound policy decisions implemented between 2004 and 2009, ushered in a “golden age of Spanish biotechnology”. In terms of the national patent licenses issued by the Spanish Patent and Trademark Office (SPTO) between 2004 and 2009, the number in biotechnology grew from 84 to 151. However, the current economic situation in Spain, along with a series of political decisions taken over the past two or three years to cut spending on R&D, predicts a sharp downturn in the performance of Spanish biotechnology. This scenario makes Spain one of the best places to study the successes and failures of the management of science and allows transfer this experience to the other international regions. We need to analyze the influence of political decisions as a major factor with a bearing on the quality of science.

Using patents as an indicator of scientific development, this paper analyzes the evolution of the biotechnology sector in Spain and its relationship with scientific policy and the management of R&D.


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