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Friday Feb 05, 2016

Submit Topic Ideas for New Quality Case Studies Pilot Program

Guest blog by Deputy Commissioner for Patent Quality Valencia Martin Wallace

The USPTO is dedicated to providing the best work products and services at every stage of the patent process. Over the past year, we have worked diligently on the evolving programs of our Enhanced Patent Quality Initiative (EPQI) that we developed in response to our stakeholder’s feedback.  In December, we initiated a new program, the Topic Submission for Case Studies Pilot Program and through it we invite our stakeholders to submit patent quality-related topics that you believe should be the subject of a USPTO case study by Friday, February 12, 2016.

The USPTO anticipates these case studies will help us better understand the quality of our work products and, where appropriate, take action to remediate quality issues. We expect these case studies to assist us in formulating best practices to enhance patent quality by improving our patent work products and examination processes, as well as recognizing areas where further examiner training may be needed.

Case study topic submissions should (1) set forth a patent quality-related issue; (2) propose how the USPTO should study the issue; and (3) discuss how such study could lead to improvement in the quality of patents issued by the USPTO.  Topic submissions should not focus on particular applications, examiners, art units, or other purely managerial concerns.

For more guidance on types of topics to submit and the form in which topics may be submitted, visit Topic Submission for Case Studies Pilot Program on our website. Submissions for the program should be emailed to  All qualifying submissions will be posted publically on our website.

Enhancing patent quality is central to fulfilling the mission of the USPTO (Read more in Director Lee’s blog update from November 2015) and we value your participation in this new pilot program. It is of upmost importance to us to involve you in our quality improvement processes, and also maintain transparency in our quality efforts.


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