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Report on the “JPO/IPR Training Course on Patent Examinations(Basic Program)”

The eight day JPO/IPR Training Course on Patent Examinations (Basic Program), the third course offered this year, was held from the 12th to the 21st of July.

This course was newly established this year with the goal of deepening participants' knowledge of substantive patent examinations and patent examination guidelines. The participants, including inexperienced patent examiners, all work in the field of patent examinations.

The eight target countries and organizations for this course were Cambodia, Kazakhstan, Laos, Morocco, Myanmar, the African Regional Intellectual Property Organization (ARIPO), the Gulf Cooperation Council Patent Office (GCCPO) and the African Intellectual Property Organization (OAPI). There were nine participants in total: one from each country and organization that took part in the course, with the exception of ARIPO, with two participants.

Group photo

Group photo

The training course began by providing participants with basic information, including outlines of the Patent and Utility Model Laws and Japanese patent examination procedures. This was followed by group discussions on the need for substantive patent examinations, along with country report presentations where participants gave reports on the intellectual property systems of their respective countries/organizations, and discussions on the attitudes of patent examiners. In addition, lectures were provided over a three-day period regarding patent examination guidelines. Sessions were also held whereby participants were asked to broadly consider the significance of patent examinations and the roles of patent examiners—including the need for substantive examinations and the specific societal functions of patent examiners—while learning about the legal systems and examination guidelines that are important in the daily duties of patent examiners.

The training participants were keenly attentive to all of the lectures, and participated actively during the question and answer sessions and discussions. The lecturers were impressed by the training participants' enthusiasm.

scenery at the training scenery at the training scenery at the training scenery at the training

scenery at the training

During the visit to the National Center for Industrial Property Information and Training (INPIT) on the second day of the training course, training participants showed a high degree of interest in the means of accessing the intellectual property information of other countries, raising questions regarding the potential scope of searches using J-PlatPat (a patent search service provided by INPIT), as well as the possibility of overseas access.

During the afternoon of the same day, training participants were separated into two groups -- and then proceeded to discuss and give presentations on the issue of patent examinations. Despite the difficulty of having a deep discussion within a group comprised of those with little or no experience in substantive examinations, the training participants evaluated the course favorably—saying that they had enough time to give considerable thought to the issue. During the country report presentations on the morning of the third day, questions were raised regarding responses to delays in patent examinations and trial systems. All of the training participants participated in this subject and expressed great interest in the similarities and differences between their own countries and other countries.

The lecture on examination guidelines included many case studies—thereby affording participants an opportunity to compare the methods of determination, as well as the points of view presented by the lecturers.

At the training course evaluation meeting, participants lauded the course for its well-organized curriculum as a basic program. In addition, some training participants suggested that lectures be given on patent classification and search methods, and that company visits be included, in order to further improve the course. We hope that the training participants will utilize the knowledge they obtained during this training course to play active roles in the patent systems of their respective countries/organizations.

Group photo

Group photo


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