Santa Clara Law’s Professor Colleen Chien has received a $35,000 research grant from the New America Foundation to expand her work relating to "Start-ups and Trolls". This grant will fund an expanded survey to determine the impacts of Patent Assertion Entities (PAEs) on the operations, growth, and innovation of startups. This version of the survey will also explore trends in patent purchasing, strategies for responding, and the market for "troll solution" providers.
"Startups drive innovation and new hires in our economy, so it’s crucial to understand how the patent system affects them," Professor Chien said. "Although patents garner a lot of attention, not enough attention has been paid to the impacts on startups. My initial work suggests that small companies are more fragile and less able to handle patent demands without significant repercussions," she continued.
Her initial survey findings on startups and patents were covered by Forbes, TechCrunch (here and here), Reuters, the Silicon Valley Business Journal and other outlets, and the subject of testimony before the FTC and DOJ.
"The Silicon Valley is the world’s leading birthplace of startup companies, and to maintain that leadership role–and the associated new jobs and economic activity–we must ensure that the patent system fosters, and doesn’t suppress, entrepreneurial activity," said Professor Eric Goldman, director of Santa Clara Law’s High Tech Law Institute. "Prof. Chien’s work is helping us understand the complex interactions between startups and patents, and the research grant she received will help provide us with even more insight on these important questions."