The Number of Patent Applications from National Universities Are Decreasing

A survey revealed that the number of patent applications filed by researchers at national universities has decreased since its peak in 2006. This survey was conducted by the National Institute of Science and Technology Policy (NISTEP) directly under the control of the Ministry of Education. Peaking at about 6,000 in 2006, the number of patent applications has continued to decrease with about 4,600 in 2012. NISTEP determined that this is due to the fact that until 2007, national universities were exempt from the full cost of the patent application fees, but starting in 2007, the national universities were required to pay the full fees. Since then, NISTEP determined that national universities have refrained from filing easy applications. Instead, the trend is for national universities to file joint applications with private companies rather than file individually owned applications. Also, the NISTEP survey looked into the number of researchers from the 86 national university across the country who have filed applications over the last 17 year which is when they first started conducting the survey. NISTEP determined that about 40,000 researchers have experience filing patent applications. There were 15 researchers who have filed more than 100 patent applications. However, the majority of researchers who have filed patent applications have filed only one patent application.