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Patent Technology Monitoring Team (PTMT)

State and Country Technology Emphasis Report,
Corporate Patenting
Utility Patent Grants
Calendar Years 2003 and 2013

- this report was created with support from the National Science Foundation -

Technology Emphasis
As Determined By USPTO Patent Class

- Explanation of Data -

This report is limited to patents having ownership assigned to Non-Government U.S. organizations and Non-Government foreign organizations. Higher Activity Index values for a technology indicate a higher technology emphasis in that technology.

In this report, technology emphasis "activity index" values and associated patent counts pertain only to the patenting activity of non-government U.S. and non-government foreign organizations, i.e., (1) displayed patent counts are limited to counts of patents having ownership assigned to non-government U.S. or non-government foreign organizations and (2) activity index calculations and values are based solely on patents having ownership assigned to non-government U.S. or non-government foreign organizations at the time of grant. These patents are predominantly but not exclusively "corporate owned" patents (for example, patents having ownership assigned to small business and nonprofit organizations are also included). In the case where patent ownership is assigned to more than one entity, ownership (e.g., "corporate owned", etc.) has been determined based on the first-named owner listed on the patent.

This report has been prepared from the Technology Assessment and Forecast (TAF) database which is administered by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO), Patent Technology Monitoring Team (PTMT). The TAF database contains selected bibliographic data for patents granted since 1963.

For each profiled region, a table in this report identifies the classes of technology that received relatively greater and lesser emphasis based on counts of issuing utility patents. Technology emphasis is displayed by means of an "activity index". Only utility patents, commonly known as "patents for inventions", are used in the determination of the activity index values presented in this report.

Patents are associated with regions based on their origin which is determined by the residence of the first-named inventor listed on an issuing patent.

These tables include activity indexes that display technology emphasis for patents granted in two single calendar years, 2003 and 2013. Activity indexes for the five (calendar) year blocks, 1999 to 2003, 2004 to 2008, and 2009 to 2013 are also included. Although patents can be classified into multiple classes of technology, only the class that was associated with each utility patent's PRIMARY classification (also referred to as its ORIGINAL classification) as of 31 December 2013 is used in the calculation of the activity index values. For further discussion, please refer to the "Classes of Technology" section, below.

In the tables, classes are listed in order of decreasing "activity index" value for the year 2013. Under this arrangement, classes of technology that were emphasized more heavily in 2013 are listed higher in the table. If two or more classes have identical "activity index" values for 2013, then the classes are listed in ascending class number order.

For a region, the "corporate activity index" for a particular period and class of technology is calculated by first determining the proportion of total "corporate owned" patents in that class that are from the region and then dividing that amount by the proportion of total "corporate owned" patents in all classes that are from the region. See the example, below, for further details about the calculation of the index values. A "corporate activity index" equal to 1.00 indicates that the region's "corporate patent" share of total "corporate patents" in that class of technology is the same as the region's share of total "corporate patents" in all classes of technology. For a time period, a "corporate activity index" value greater than 1.00 for a class indicates that the region has a relatively higher proportion of the total "corporate patents" in that class as compared to the region's proportion of total "corporate patents" that are in all classes.

Please note that full information necessary for calculating all displayed activity index values in a table is presented in the table.


This example refers to the calculation of a technology emphasis "activity index" value for class 399, "Electrophotography", for the year 2013, and for the region, ALL FOREIGN REGIONS:

For "corporate owned" utility patents that were granted in 2013, the ALL FOREIGN REGIONS " corporate activity index" for Class 399, "Electrophotography", is calculated as follows:

Referring to the technology emphasis "activity index" table for the region, ALL FOREIGN REGIONS--

In 2013 and in class 399, there were 2,014 patents granted (see table column 15 for class 399) of which 1,832 were regional patents (see table column 10 for class 399).

In 2013 and in all classes of technology, there were 257,949 patents granted (last row of table, column 15) of which 138,691 were regional patents (last row of table, column 10).

The regional patent share of total "corporate owned" utility patents issuing in Class 399 in 2013 is:
( 1,832 / 2,014 ), or 90.963 percent.

The regional share of total "corporate owned" utility patents issuing in all utility patent classes in 2013 is:
( 138,691 / 257,949 ), or 53.767 percent.

The ALL FOREIGN REGIONS "corporate activity index" for Class 399, "Electrophotography, in 2013 is:
( ( 1,832 / 2,014 ) / ( 138,691 / 257,949 ) ) = (90.963 / 53.767) = 1.69
(see table column 5 for the activity index value for class 399)

Note: Displayed patent counts refer to counts of "utility" patents.

Classes of Technology

The class breakouts available in this table are major divisions of technology in the U.S. Patent Classification System (USPCS). It should be noted that each class is further divided into smaller divisions of technology called subclasses. The USPCS currently contains approximately 475 total classes and 165,000 total subclasses. Technology classes available in these reports are classes of technology as defined by the U.S. Patent Classification System as it existed on 31 December 2013.

Copies of each patent are placed (classified) in those subclasses that have been identified as pertinent to the information disclosed and legally claimed for protection in the patent. One, and only one, of these subclasses is designated as the PRIMARY or ORIGINAL classification and the remainder (if any) are designated as CROSS-REFERENCE classifications. Counting patents only by PRIMARY classification, as has been done for these tables, will ensure that each patent is counted only once. However, if a patent teaches more than one concept, e.g., table and chair, only one concept, e.g., table, will be counted . Please note that a patent's PRIMARY classification is also referred to as its ORIGINAL classification in U.S. Patent and Trademark Office specific terminology. Only utility patent grants, commonly known as "patents for inventions", are considered in the calculation of activity index values in this report. Each table includes a full list of the utility patent classes in the USPCS that existed on 31 December 2013 where at least one "corporate-owned" utility patent that issued between 1999 and 2013 received PRIMARY or ORIGINAL classification.

Patents are not assigned PRIMARY or ORIGINAL classification in Classes 901 through 987. These classes are known as cross-reference classification art collections. Therefore, activity index values are not calculated for Classes 901 through 987 in the report tables.

In these tables, some classes have been combined together under a single class identifier. In such cases, combined classes are noted in the accompanying class titles. In addition, selected class titles have been modified to clarify technological content. Patent classification is based on the PRIMARY classification of each patent as of 31 December 2013.

If the record for a patent is incomplete and contains no PRIMARY classification, then the patent is counted in class 001, titled CLASSIFICATION UNDETERMINED. For a more detailed description of the technologies encompassed by a U.S. Patent Classification System class of technology, the Manual of U.S. Patent Classification and the U.S. Patent Classification System Classification Definitions should be consulted.

Active Classes

Classes in which 200 or more "corporate owned" utility patents issued in 2013 are identified with a 'Y' in the "Active Class" column of the tables. These classes would be those classes in which a substantial amount of "corporate owned" patenting activity occurred during 2013.

Analyzing the Data

Use of spreadsheet software may facilitate analysis of the data contained in the report table. Users should note that many spreadsheet software programs (e.g., Microsoft Excel) can import these tables directly for use by the software. Check the spreadsheet software documentation for details.

Printing the Report

Some web browsers can print the report by formatting it to fit the printed page (e.g., Microsoft Internet Explorer, version 7 and newer). Due to the width of the report, printing in landscape mode with minimal margins is suggested. In addition, importing a report's web page into spreadsheet or word-processing software may allow a user additional flexibility for formatting the report table for printing. Check the corresponding software documentation for details.

Regions Consisting of Groups of Countries

Several of the profiled regions in this report consist of more than one state or country. The regions consisting of more than one state or country are listed below. Please note that patents are associated with regions based on patent origin where origin is determined by the residence of the first-named inventor.