Travail de recherche/Working paper
Résumé : This paper puts forward a new methodology to characterize and compare the examination practice of most patent offices. The methodology codifies public information into a typology of chronological key examiner actions. This approach translates into a quantitative characterization of search completeness (i.e., classification and citation practices), certainty, speed, and stringency, or grant rate. The methodology is tested on a sample of 100 random families of a non-controversial field, comprising EPO, JPO and USPTO members. The results show profound differences across offices in respect to search completeness, certainty, and speed and indicate heterogeneous levels of stringency.