The Thomas Alva Edison Visiting Scholars Program enlists the services of academic researchers as Distinguished Scholars or Research Fellows to study intellectual property (IP) issues that further the agency's mission and the public interest. Following the introduction of the program in January, 2012, Edison Scholars have studied ways to improve USPTO's efficiency and performance, decrease burdens on applicants, and improve patent quality and clarity, among other topics.
**NEW CALL FOR PROPOSALS - Due July 11, 2016**
Edison Distinguished Scholars
Edison Distinguished Scholars are senior scholars and experts in law, economics, and related fields. They are invited to the USPTO to pursue their research on a wide range of topics related to IP and IP policy. They also advise policy makers on matters close to their areas of expertise.
Edison Research Fellows
Edison Research Fellows program was created in 2013 in response to an executive action by the White House to expand the Edison program. Research Fellows submit proposals to study specific topics of particular interest to policy makers, and to make this research and data available to the public. Proposal selection is based on merit and policy relevance.
The USPTO Edison Scholars were featured at a 2015 conference co-organized with the Hoover Institution's IP2 program: What is the Academy's Role in Evidence-Based Policy Making for Intellectual Property?
Read more about the Hoover IP2 conference here.
The Edison Research Scholars held a webinar to share with the public their research topics and methodologies. The Scholars expect to continue this type of outreach going forward to engage the public and share information and ideas.
- 2014 Expanded Edison Program blog by USPTO Deputy Director Michelle K. Lee
- One-year Edison program anniversary blog by USPTO Acting Director Teresa Stanek Rea
- Press release announcing the program
- Original Call for Proposals
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