Innovation and Its Discontents


Adam Jaffe and Josh Lerner’s Innovation and Its Discontents is a new book that tells the story of how recent changes in patenting—an institutional process that was created to nurture innovation—have wreaked havoc on innovators, businesses, and economic productivity. Jaffe and Lerner, who have spent the past two decades studying the patent system, show how legal changes initiated in the 1980s converted the system from a stimulator of innovation to a creator of litigation and uncertainty that threatens the innovation process itself.  This web site provides information about the book, as well as some useful links to those interested in the topic.


The Book


Book Overview from Princeton University Press

Sample Chapter

Amazon Page


Spin-Off Articles


Patent Prescription (IEEE Spectrum)

Patent Medicine (Harvard Business Review)

Working Knowledge interview


Selected Reviews and Recognitions


Economist Article

Economist Selection as One of Top “Business and Economics” Books of 2004

New York Times Economic Scene Article

New York Times Patent Columns Article

Newsweek Article

Scientific American Article (Part 1)

Scientific American Article (Part 2)


Related Material


Links to Recent Patent Cases

The Blackberry Dispute

Federal Trade Commission’s To Promote Innovation

National Academy of Sciences’ A Patent System for the 21st Century