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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”

The Latin America Special Technology (medical equipment) Patent Examination Program, a two-week JPO/IPR training program, was held in Tokyo from November 24 to December 7, 2016. This program was designed to improve patent examiners’ understanding of substantive examination practices and their specialized skills through case studies. The trainees were all patent examiners in the medical equipment field with at least three years of experience at various Latin American IP Offices. A total of 15 examiners joined this training course from Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Mexico, and Peru.

The curriculum began with a comparative study of the patent systems of various countries, including Japan, and seminars for the exchange of opinions by the JPO examiners and the trainees. This was followed by training sessions, which employed case studies to focus on substantive examination criteria.

At a visit to the JPO on November 25, the trainees paid a courtesy visit to Mr. Susumu Iwasaki, Director-General of the Second Patent Examination Department. They also toured the examination room and the Grand Bench. The trainees were thrilled by this great opportunity to see the examination room of a foreign country. The tour was the program’s most popular activity.

Courtesy visit to the JPO

Courtesy visit to the JPO

Tour of the JPO Grand Bench

Tour of the JPO Grand Bench

Regarding the comparative study and opinion exchange sessions offered at the beginning of the course, some trainees expressed the desire to identify shortcomings in their countries' systems by comparing them to the Japanese system. Some also said that they hoped to use their newly acquired knowledge to revise their countries' examination guidelines in the future.

Prior to departing for Japan, the trainees were asked to prepare reports on their home countries. They then presented these reports in a special session during the training program. The trainees listened attentively to their colleagues’ presentations and asked many questions about the differences between those systems and their home countries' systems.

Presentation of country reports

Presentation of country reports

Presentation of country reports

Presentation of country reports

In the latter half of the training course, the trainees participated in case study-based training sessions and learned about important judgment criteria, such as novelty, inventive step, the description requirement, and amendment. They also received training in prior art searches, which is the most important part of a patent examination. Each trainee was given access to a computer on which to practice prior art searches.

Patent examination training (novelty, inventive step) Patent information search practice

Patent examination training (novelty, inventive step) Patent information search practice

Patent examination training (novelty, inventive step) Patent information search practice

Patent examination training (novelty, inventive step) Patent information search practice

On the last day of the training course, a comprehensive discussion was held. The trainees gave presentations on an issue assigned by the lecturer early in the training program. The lecturer commented and provided additional information after each presentation. The lecturer also answered trainee questions that had not been fully addressed during the training program. Since the class covered all the key points of the curriculum comprehensively, some trainees commented that it enabled them to have their remaining questions answered and further their education.

Comprehensive discussion

Comprehensive discussion

During the training course, the trainees listened closely to all of the explanations given by the lecturers.

The trainees evaluated this training program favorably overall, saying that it helped them achieve their goals. Many trainees commented that they were eager to share their newly acquired knowledge with their colleagues after returning.

On weekends, the trainees were actively involved in Japanese cultural activities and customs, and built strong ties with each other.

We hope that the network of IP experts nurtured through this training course continues to grow, and that they find their experiences in Japan useful in their future careers.

Closing ceremony

Closing ceremony

 

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