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August 23, 2011
Brattle Senior Advisor and Harvard Business School Professor Josh Lerner Featured in New York Times Article on the Technology Patent Market

Josh Lerner, a Brattle senior advisor and the Jacob H. Schiff Professor of Investment Banking at Harvard Business School, was quoted in a recent New York Times article on the surge in the technology patent market.

The article, “A Bull Market in Tech Patents,” discusses how despite a weakened U.S. economy, the technology patent market remains strong. In June, several companies, including Apple and Microsoft, teamed up to pay $4.5 billion to bankrupt Canadian telecommunications maker Nortel for 6,000 patents they held. The deal works out to $750,000 per patent.

Analysts argue that this recent boom in patent buying and selling isn’t doing anything to help aid the U.S. economy. Rather, it diverts money from innovation that is vital to the nation’s economic development. Dr. Lerner, an expert on the impact of intellectual property protection, argues that this trend is nothing more than a transfer of wealth from innovators to stockholders who have no motivation to innovate.

“You’d much rather see Apple spend some of that $4 billion on new inventions,” Dr. Lerner explains in the article.

To read the full article, please visit the New York Times website.