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Patent protection and incentives to innovate :trends and effects in Italy
The relationship between patent protection, incentives to innovate, the
generation of innovations, and the accrual of benefits from innovation was
investigated. The study was based on an analysis of research and development,
patenting, productivity and output data for Italy.
In 1979, Italy made significant changes in its patent law to conform
with European Economic Community standards. Previously, the Italian law had
provided weak protection of intellectual property, which includes product or
process innovations, publications, and art. Economic theory predicts that, under
certain conditions, such a change should increase the amount of resources
devoted to innovation. Furthermore, an increase in successful innovative activity
is expected to lead to increases in the growth of per capita gross domestic