Web-Based Intellectual Property MarketPlace: A Survey of Current Practices

Web-Based Intellectual Property MarketPlace: A Survey of Current Practices

Isabel Ramos (Centre Algoritmi, University of Minho, Portugal) and José Fernandes (Centre Algoritmi, University of Minho, Portugal)
DOI: 10.4018/jicthd.2011070105
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In the past year, knowledge and innovation management have acquired increasing relevance in organizations. In the last decade, open innovation strategy, and in particular, crowdsourcing innovation model has also gained increasing importance. This model is seen as a new innovation model, capable of accelerating the innovation process. Therefore, it is important to understand how organizations can best take advantage of this innovation model. This paper approaches in two ways for commercializing intellectual property: crowdsourcing innovation, and intellectual property marketplaces. Thus, with the intention of understanding the concepts and practices, the study started by collecting scientific articles through bibliographic data bases. The paper provides knowledge about concepts and practices underlying the ways for commercializing intellectual property. It also contributes with a proposal of architecture for an intellectual property marketplace, based on the analysis of practices about crowdsourcing innovation and intellectual property marketplaces. This architecture is still in a draft stage, but already includes helpful insights for organizations interested in applying the open innovation strategy.
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Intellectual Property Commercialization

In recent years two ways for commercializing IP, CI and IP marketplaces, supported by web platforms have acquired increasing relevancy. The CI practice aims to promote the creativity with intention for creating new ideas and concepts; and the IP marketplaces aim to provide support for commercializing IP already patented, i.e., they are focused in the transferring of IP among IP owners and buyers.

To understand better the contents of the survey that are being discussed in the next section, some concepts related to crowdsourcing and IP marketplaces are being discussed next.

Created by How (2006), the crowdsourcing term is presented as a web-based business model, composed of a distributed network of individuals. The idea is to launch challenges, with the intention of creating innovative solutions. In other words, a company puts in a crowdsourcing platform a challenge, for what the associative creative network (designated by crowd) develop solutions (Brabham, 2008).

This study finds that there are two main definitions about crowdsourcing. The first one is given by Howe (2006): “Technological advances in everything from product design software to digital video cameras are breaking down the cost barriers that once separated amateurs from professionals. Hobbyists, part-timers, and dabblers suddenly have a market for their efforts, as smart companies in industries as disparate as pharmaceuticals and television discover ways to tap the latent talent of the crowd. The labor is not always free, but it costs a lot less than paying traditional employees. It’s not outsourcing; it’s crowdsourcing”(p. 3).

And the second definition was given by Brabham (2008): “Crowdsourcing is not just another buzzword, not another meme. It is not just a repackaging of open philosophy for capitalist ends either. It is a model capable of aggregating talent, leveraging ingenuity while reducing the costs and time formerly needed to solve problems. Finally, Crowdsourcing is enabled only through the technology of the web, which is a creative mode of user interactivity, not merely a medium between messages and people” (p. 87).

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