Book Review: Handbook of Intellectual Property Research [Part 2]

This Kat continues her review of the “Handbook of Intellectual Property Research” (ed. by I. Calboli and M. Montagnani, OUP, 912 pp.), published recently in open access (review of Parts I and II, here). After discussing traditional legal methods in Parts I and II, the second half of the book introduces readers to empirical research methods.

Part 3: Intersections between IP and (social) science

Part 3, starting with Chapter 26 written by Shubha Ghosh, analyses consequentialist thinking and economic analysis in IP. The author introduces readers to two groups of research methods in economics: behavioural and institutional. Economics approach to patent law is then discussed in Chapter 27, by Bruno van Pottelsberghe de la Potterie. After introducing the areas, where the economics of patents is especially relevant (among them, the design of patent systems or the patent examination process), the author provides readers with a through literature review.

Chapter 28, authored by Geertrui Van Overwalle and Lina Kestemont, reminded this Kat of the methodology courses she took during the first year of her PhD studies. Van Overwalle and Kestemont present a useful classification of different research designs (eg descriptive research an evaluative research), which is followed with an explanation of doctrinal and empirical research methods.

Daniel Seng details in Chapter 29 the six steps to quantitative legal analysis. Although quantitative legal analysis is not without its limitations, Seng reminds that where designed properly, it can become a reliable tool in IP research.

Sharon Bar-Ziv looks at the content analysis approach (one of the basic methods in empirical research) in IP scholarship. After introducing readers to the three main stages of content analysis, Bar-Ziv applies this methodology to a case study: content analysis of online copyright law cases.

In Chapter 31, Thomas Margoni addresses computational legal methods (such as text and data mining) in IP research. Text and data mining, Margoni believes, can be used as an autonomous methodological approach in legal research so as to derive informed conclusions from big sets of data.

Quantitative research methods are further discussed in Chapter 32, by Rudi Bekkers and Arianna Martinelli. Bekkers and Martinelli take a look at the network analysis approach as a tool to study patent and citations data. This allows one to analyse patent networks as a whole, rather than in terms of isolated patents.

Alan C. Marco and Saurabh Vishnubhakat study survival analysis in IP research in Chapter 33 of the book. Survival analysis is a branch of statistics, which models the duration of time until a given event occurs. Basic concepts of survival analysis may be applied to study patent examination backlogs or trade mark renewals.

Chapter 34, this Kat’s favourite, is authored by William T. Gallagher and Debora J. Halbert. Here, the authors provide guidance on how to conduct IP research from the perspective of sociolegal studies. Using several examples from their own research, Gallagher and Halbert explain how qualitative interview methods can be applied to IP, with a step-by-step analysis of each stage.

The discussion is followed in Chapter 37, where Jessica Silbey considers how qualitative research methods may be applied to studies of IP and ethnography. Silbey explains key stages of the interview process, with examples drawn from ethnographic research.

The psychology of IP law is presented in Chapter 35, by Gregory N. Mandel. Based on practical examples, Mandel explains various concepts of psychology, such as foresight and hindsight bias, and how they deepen our understanding of legal systems.

In Chapter 36 Elfriede Penz and Eva Hofmann present the methodological perspectives of IP and behavioural studies. In this chapter, the reader follows Penz and Hofmann, who apply a qualitative, multi-method approach to understand consumer behaviour regarding IP infringement.

Dilip Sharma and Abhijeet Kumar close the discussion of empirical research in Chapter 38 with an analysis of methods for IP valuation. Here, readers will find an explanation of both traditional valuation methods (cost method, market method and income method) and newer methods (such as the Monte Carlo method), - all based on real-life scenarios.

Part 4: Intersections between IP law and Pluralism

Ahmed Abdel-Latif and Pedro Roffe cover the interface between IP and sustainable development in Chapter 39. Abdel-Latif and Roffe trace the evolution of sustainable development concerns within the IP agenda and vice-versa (eg how IP law can contribute to the achievement of the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals). They conclude by suggesting several areas for future research, such as the impact of IP on agriculture and food security.

J. Janewa Osei-Tutu follows the discussion in Chapter 40, addressing a human development approach to IP law. This is a research area according to which IP law contributes to improvements in public health, education, and wealth.

In Chapter 41, Tim Taylor and Estelle Derclaye address methodological approaches to IP rights and well-being. This chapter echoes the views, found in Chapters 39 and 40, and show how an interdisciplinary approach may contribute to a better understanding of well-being justifications behind IP law.

Lateef Mtima and Steven D. Jamar examine IP through the social justice lens in Chapter 42. This approach enables one to detect doctrinal weakness in IP law, whereby certain groups are favoured to the detriment of others, this to inform policy-makers and implement solutions based on what the authors call IP social justice law.

Peter Jaszi looks at the future research on IP and the ‘old arts’ (as the author suggests naming them) in Chapter 43. The term ‘folklore’, Jaszi observes, becomes increasingly controversial in discussions of songs, stories, dances in the post-colonial context. According to the author, IP scholars need to pay closer attention to whether IP law affords sufficient protection to local communities that practice and preserve the old arts.

In Chapter 44, Caroline B. Ncube describes research perspectives on openness, a concept relevant across all areas of IP law. Ncube focuses on methodologies applied in copyright and patent law scholarship. Jeremy de Beer complements the previous chapter with a discussion on IP and open innovation in Chapter 45. After a detailed synthesis of open innovation concepts, de Beer points to avenues for future research on IP and open innovation.

In Chapter 46, Margaret Chon describes how critical methodology, an approach based on reflective assessment and critique of law, applies to IP research. After performing a thorough literature review, Chon concludes that critical examination in legal scholarship is more common than typically acknowledged.

In Chapter 47, Ann Bartow looks at feminist methodologies and IP. Several methods are suggested for gender-focused research, including counting and collecting related statistics.

Anjali Vats and and Deidré A. Keller suggest, in Chapter 48, how critical race theory (CRT) may be applied to IP research, a research branch that the authors have baptized as Critical Race IP. Critical Race IP as an interdisciplinary research movement, studying racial and colonial non-neutrality in IP laws, is a topic also discussed in earlier chapters of this same book.

Christine Haight Farley follows in Chapter 49, with a research framework on IP and morality. Morality imports concepts such as good faith, ethics, or human rights into IP law. Farley provides readers with a substantive review of different venues of research on IP and morality, including the role morality plays in exclusions to IP, or morality aspects in moral rights law.

Margo A. Bagley explores, in Chapter 50, IP law through the lens of religious thought in Catholicism, Judaism and Islam. Although at first the connection between the two categories may seem far from obvious, Bagley explains how certain aspects of IP issues, such as patenting of life, are based on religious perceptions.

The discussion is complemented with Chapter 51, where Miranda Risang Ayu Palar looks at IP law and spiritual beliefs, such as pantheism, shamanism or totemism. The author’s analysis of how Confucianism influences IP in Asia is highly illustrative. In Confucianism, imitation is viewed as a ‘noble art’ and is encouraged, which, the author says, may be reason behind a high number of copying and counterfeits in Asia.

The book closes with Chapter 52, by Ida Madieha Abdul Ghani Azmi. Using the example of Malaysia, the author examines the methodology approaches that can be applied when studying mixed (ie, both civil and common law) jurisdictions.

In a word, the contributions in Parts 3 and 4 are a must read for both early stage and seasoned scholars when designing an interdisciplinary methodology for their IP research.
Book Review: Handbook of Intellectual Property Research [Part 2] Book Review: Handbook of Intellectual Property Research [Part 2] Reviewed by Anastasiia Kyrylenko on Monday, November 29, 2021 Rating: 5

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