Patented in China


The body of research providing empirical support for the importance of innovation for rapid economic growth has left countries scrambling to cultivate innovative capabilities amongst their citizens. China’s emergence as the top filer of domestic patent applications in 2011 has been attributed to policies enacted by the Chinese leadership aimed at increasing innovative activity within the country. This paper finds support for the argument that government intervention has a stronger influence on innovation than free markets, for patterns in domestic patent activity in China and Malaysia seem to coincide with each government’s policies and incentives that explicitly target innovative activity. However, the debate on the quality of Chinese patents suggests the importance of implementing a more sustainable innovation development strategy over enforcing short-term quantitative targets. This paper discusses the role of education in serving as a more sustainable method in the development of a nation’s innovation trajectory.

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