Office of the Chief Economist

The Office of the Chief Economist (OCE) is responsible for advising the Under Secretary of Commerce for Intellectual Property and Director of the USPTO on the economic implications of policies and programs affecting the U.S. intellectual property (IP) system. The office disseminates detailed patent and trademark data, undertakes research, and conducts economic analysis on a variety of IP issues. OCE works with policy makers, collaborates with academics, and engages the public more generally through conferences it organizes, the publicly accessible research datasets it provides, and its publications.   

Research mission

Our research agenda is organized under three broad themes:

  • Understanding the nature, role, and impact of IP on innovation, entrepreneurship, and economic performance 
  • Understanding the economic implications of domestic and international laws and policies regarding IP
  • Understanding the economic aspects of USPTO initiatives

Research datasets

Comprehensive micro-level research datasets are available to the public and downloadable in bulk. To facilitate analyses, each dataset has a companion working paper that provides documentation on the dataset’s structure and contents.


Provides patent data visualization and analysis platform intended to increase the value, utility, and transparency of US patent data. The PatentsView platform is built on a regularly updated database that longitudinally links inventors, their organizations, locations, and overall patenting activity.


Research and policy findings published in peer-reviewed journals, official reports, and as early-stage working papers to facilitate discussion.    


OCE hosts and co-hosts events with our partners including:

Please note that some of the events are not open to the public. 

Croak Visiting Scholars Program

Croak Distinguished Scholars are senior scholars and experts in law, economics, and related fields. They are invited to the USPTO to pursue 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. 

Croak Research Fellows program was created in 2013 in response to an executive action (link is external) 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.

Office staff

OCE has a team of economists, statisticians, programmers, and administrative professionals with extensive experience in economic research, advanced statistical methods, programming, and project management.