The global recession in 2008 took a toll on patent activity around the world. While some countries managed to maintain growth in patent applications, others saw declines in application growth for the first time in many years. Throughout 2009 and 2010, the world was resuming growth, and patent applications can be seen as an index for how well countries were responding. Overall, European patents applications increased at 8.4% through 2009 and 2010. Via the EPO, here are the top five European countries with the largest growth in patent applications between 2009 and 2010. (We limited the list to countries with at least 100 patents in 2009 to ensure statistical significance.)
1. Turkey – 50.3% (189-284)
As we noted in our recent post, the country’s IP activity has been consistently increasing at an incredible rate for over a decade. This 50% growth is huge—but not out of the ordinary for Turkish inventors.
2. Luxembourg – 39.1% (304-423)
Most of the patent applications coming from Luxembourg are filed abroad—commensurate with the small size of the economy and strong economic links with neighboring countries. But that doesn’t mean those patents aren’t making an impact. Luxembourg has a high patent intensity score and is a leader in pharmaceutical patents, with pharmaceuticals representing roughly 15% of its annual applications.
3. Liechtenstein – 27.2% (228-290)
While little information is available about Lichtenstein’s patent activity, the number of patents and applications remains impressive. Considering that the country’s population is a mere 36,000, having patent applications measured in the hundreds is remarkable, and strong growth is a sign for innovation, as it is in any other country.
4. Belgium – 24.6% (1637-2040)
Belgium was one of the many countries with well-established inventing cultures to post declines in the number of patent applications in 2008. Belgium’s 2010 growth shows the country returning to its pre-recession levels.
5. Denmark – 23.8% (1489-1843)
Similar to Belgium in many ways, Denmark has not seen major trends in patent application growth in recent years, but nevertheless has consistently strong action in IP. Like Belgium, the 2010 statistics show a rebound from the recession.
A complete list of 2009-2010 changes can be found here, via the EPO.
Additional data for this post was accessed through WIPO’s Statistical Country Profiles.
Check out our most recent Top 5 Lists:
- Top 3: New Ways to Run a Bracket Competition
- Top 5: Upcoming IP Events
- Top 5: EPO Patent Applicants
- Top 5: Essential Apps for Researchers
- Top 5: U.S. Drug Patent Expirations 2012 (Part II)
…And the rest can be found here.