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Home > International topics > Cooperation in Human Resource Development > Assistance to Developing Countries > JPO Cooperation in Human Resource Development > Training Programs(short) > Report on the “JPO/IPR Training Course on Patent Examination in Specific Technical Fields for Latin American Countries”

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Report on the “JPO/IPR Training Course on Patent Examination in Specific Technical Fields for Latin American Countries”

From July 13 to 24, 2015, the JPO/IPR Training Course on Patent Examination in Specific Technical Fields for Latin American Countries was conducted, with participation by 14 trainees from Argentine, Chile, Columbia, Mexico and Peru.

The trainees are patent examiners at intellectual property agencies in their respective countries and are in charge of examination of "Specific Technical Fields (Information and Communication)" as specified by the Japan Patent Office. The focus of the training, on the patent examination standards and examination practices in Japan, related to these fields.

On Day 1 the trainees visited the National Center for Industrial Property Information and Training and the Information & Communication Examination Office, both operating within the office of the JPO. In the Examination Office, Mr. Atsushi Kuramoto and Mr. Hiroyuki Oka, examiners engaged in examinations in the JPO, explained to the trainees the examination system of the JPO. The trainees also learned how to use the terminal device for patent examiners. The trainees actively asked questions mainly about practical matters related to examinations.

scenery at the training

scenery at the training

In the afternoon training session, "Patent Examination Practices and Standards," the trainees listened to lectures about JPO examination standards, given by Mr. Kuramoto and Mr. Oka from the JPO. In the first part of this interactive session lecturers explained actual example cases of examinations, comparing the systems used by the JPO with those of the trainees' countries, and then many opinions and questions were exchanged between trainees regarding the differences between countries. All trainees actively participated in the discussion.

scenery at the training

scenery at the training

On Day 2, in the morning, the Country Report session was held. The trainees presented reports on the patent examinations in their countries and could also learn about the examination systems in other countries. Since Latin America is now attracting the attention of people planning to obtain intellectual property rights in these countries, more visitors attended this session this year than the Country Report session last year.

scenery at the training

scenery at the training

In the afternoon, in line with the topic discussed in the morning, Mr. Yoshisue Tsunoda from Shin-yu International Patent Firm gave a lecture on "Comparison of Patent Examination Practices among the Participating Countries (Discussion)." Before they came to Japan for this training course, Mr. Tsunoda sent to individual trainees questions about the patent systems in their countries. Because Mr. Tsunoda structured his lecture based on the responses received from them, the trainees could effectively deepen their understanding of patent examination systems in Japan as well as in the countries of the other trainees. Mr. Tsunoda also spoke in the overall discussion on the last day. With his comprehensive knowledge and deep insight, Mr. Tsunoda responded to questions by giving easy-to-understand explanations and providing extra information so that the trainees could increase their knowledge. This resulted in high satisfaction among the trainees.

scenery at the training

scenery at the training

On Day 3 Mr. Yuji Tsuruya from Itoh International Patent Office gave a lecture to deepen the trainees' understanding of the examination standards in Japan. While people from various fields were invited as it is a future field, most trainees had experience in examinations of patent applications in the information and communications field. Accordingly, many questions and opinions were exchanged regarding differences from their systems.

scenery at the training

scenery at the training

On Day 4 Mr. Nobuo Fujimoto from APTUS International Patent Office lectured on the patent information search practices. He explained the examination method used in Japan, which is one of main operations of examiners, and FI and F-Term which are systems unique to Japan. It was a one-day lecture, and many trainees said that they wanted more time for this session. Some trainees said that the explanation about FI and F-Term, which were new concepts to them, was useful and they would consider adopting AIPN in their countries. On the other hand, many trainees expressed their wish to discuss many exercise problems and get coaching on the results of discussions, in addition to the explanation of FI and F-Term. In particular, many wanted to have an OJT opportunity to work with JPO examiners.

scenery at the training

scenery at the training

On Day 5 the trainees made a study visit to Fujitsu Limited. They received an explanation about the company's intellectual property strategy. They asked many technical questions. Persons in the IP strategy department of the company responded to these questions, as well as expressing honest opinions unique to that company. It was a good opportunity for the trainees to actively exchange opinions. In the visit to a showroom, the trainees received explanations about the latest technologies of Fujitsu and historical changes in the company’s technologies, and saw actual products exhibited in the show room. The trainees were very impressed to see the office of a leading company in Japan, and to learn about its intellectual property management and its latest products.

scenery at the training

scenery at the training

The study visit ended in the early afternoon. They then moved to the APIC training room to listen to a lecture on "What Applicants Expect from Examiners (Discussion)" given by Mr. Takao Ogiya, Director General of APIC. Some trainees said that it was a useful lecture because they could experience different viewpoints concerning examination practice, such as thinking from the viewpoint of the applicant, and conducting the examination with a wider viewpoint.

scenery at the training scenery at the training

scenery at the training

On Day 5 Mr. Shoji Hadate, a patent attorney from Intellectual Property Office NEXPAT, gave a session on Patent Examination Practices (Novelty and Inventive Step). Many trainees commented that they could understand very well how an examiner should make a judgment. Many case examples were presented. The lecturer and trainees discussed interactively what judgments should be made for each case if it were examined in their countries. Through many questions and active discussions, the trainees could understand the differences of examination practices between countries and expand their insight. Many trainees said that they wanted more time for that session.

scenery at the training scenery at the training

scenery at the training

On Day 6 Mr. Kentaro Ito, a patent attorney from TMI Associates, gave a session on Patent Examination Practices (Exercise) (Description Requirements and Amendments). He introduced various legal precedents and his opinions from the viewpoints of the applicant, the plaintiff and the defendant. Many questions and opinions were exchanged. The trainees could deepen their understanding of the topic of the session, "Description Requirements and Amendments."

scenery at the training

scenery at the training

On Day 7 Mr. Kazuhiro Matsuda, a patent attorney from Hirota & Associates, lectured on patent infringement cases. Because the trainees were not familiar with patent infringement lawsuits, the session was very useful for them. As they could acquire new knowledge, this session was very favorably recognized and praised, among other sessions. As Mr. Matsuda has taught in a university, his way of managing the lecture was also highly rated. He gave precise answers to all questions from the trainees.

scenery at the training scenery at the training

scenery at the training

On the last day of the training course Mr. Tsunoda, who had also given a lecture on Day 2, spoke in the overall discussion session in the morning. He responded sincerely to the trainees’ questions. Both the lecturer and the trainees expressed that the summary lecture was very useful as an opportunity to share opinions.

In general, the trainees commented that they could use the things they had learned in these sessions in their practices back home. Both the lecturers and the trainees felt that they learned a lot in this training program. As requested by many trainees, in future programs more time should be used for exercises to practice the actual examination process to further enhance the quality of the training.

We believe that this training course contributed to significant progress for the trainees and we hope that they will demonstrate their abilities in their countries in the future.

Group photo

Group photo

 

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