As the economy has been becoming more knowledge-based and the process of globalization has been accelerating, patent portfolio has become an important aspect of key competitive advantages. Patents make great contributions for firms to protect and benefit from their innovation and are essential for firms’ competence, survival, and development. Previous research has studied patent strategy by scholars of different disciplines from different perspectives. However, an integrated and consistent theoretical framework has not been developed on how firms could initiate suitable patent strategies which fit the dynamic environment. In order to improve the theoretical framework of patent strategy and provide a theoretical basis for firms’ patent management practice in China, by searching and reorganizing literature in recent 10 years, this paper conducts a literature review on the choice of patent strategy including whether to adopt patents to protect innovation and how to leverage patents to generate value from the perspective of strategic fit. We focus on the fit between patent strategy and micro environment, meso environment, and macro environment. We integrate the recent development of patent strategy literature, grasp the research frontier, and construct a theoretical framework on firm patent strategy. This paper holds theoretical implications for patent strategy research by integrating ideas in the literature and giving a consistent framework, and also has practical implications for firms’ patent management practice. Furthermore, based on the literature review, we suggest that future research should put more attention on the following aspects. First, research on patent operation should be extended. Second, since prior research mainly focused on developed economies, future research should study patent strategy in transition economies. Third, patent strategy literature should be expanded by providing insights on micro level mechanisms. Fourth, since prior research ignored the impact of networks on patent strategy, scholars should study patent strategy from the social network perspective. Fifth, cross-level research may extend patent strategy research by integrating factors from the macro, meso, and micro level. Finally, considering the dynamic essence of patent strategy, more dynamic research is needed to improve our theoretical understanding of patent strategy.
A Literature Review on the Strategic Fit between Patent Strategy and Environment
Foreign Economics & Management Vol. 41, Issue 01, pp. 3 - 15 (2019) DOI:10.16538/j.cnki.fem.2019.01.001
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Cite this article
Justin Tan, Zhao Xiaoyang. A Literature Review on the Strategic Fit between Patent Strategy and Environment[J]. Foreign Economics & Management, 2019, 41(1): 3-15.
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