Research on Patent Policy for AI-Generated Inventions

© 2023 EPFL

© 2023 EPFL

Researchers from U.S. and Swiss institutions have published a comprehensive study on the intricacies and potential reforms of patent systems in light of AI-generated inventions. The article is forthcoming in the Southern California Law Review.

The article, set against the backdrop of the evolving digital revolution, dives into the core challenges posed by inventions autonomously created by artificial intelligence (AI) software. With AI-generated inventions becoming more prevalent due to advancements in data, methods, and computing capabilities, there is a discernible shift in the innovation process. This potentially makes the process of invention cheaper and more efficient.

However, the existing patent systems and policy frameworks might not be sufficiently prepared for this shift. The paper sheds light on the urgent need to consider the protection of AI-generated inventions. It discusses how AI-generated inventions might influence current patentability standards and argues in favor of allowing patent protection for such inventions.

The researchers also underscore the importance of global cooperation in harmonizing legislation related to AI patents. They suggest immediate actionable steps such as requiring patent applicants to disclose the involvement of AI in the invention process, thereby tracking AI-driven inventions. This is crucial to understanding the extent of AI’s impact on patent processes empirically.

The paper argues for a proactive approach to modernizing the patent system, especially as AI technologies continue to evolve rapidly. Delaying policy reforms might inadvertently lead to undesirable societal consequences.

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