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LUISS Guido Carli

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Why intellectual property is a fundamental issue for managers

All the rules for managers in a book by LUISS professor Massimiliamo Granieri, published by LUISS University Press

Intellectual Property

Intellectual Property for Managers is the latest book by Massimiliano Granieri, professor of Intellectual Property Rights and Technology Transfer at the Department of Business and Management at LUISS.

Published by LUISS University Press, the book is not simply a manual intended for students in the professor’s course on how to make sense of the complex regulations on intellectual property, but also a broad and comprehensive overview of one of the oldest methods used to establish a competitive advantage, whether entrepreneurially or in terms of scientific research.

"The global market is much more aggressive than in the past. Today there remain only a few entrepreneurs who have a permanent competitive advantage and the real problem has become one of maintaining an advantageous position, and that starts with investments in innovation," explains Granieri. It is in this context that understanding legal material related to patents becomes fundamental, as it can prevent potential competitors from illegally producing or using a certain product or a specific formula. "Intellectual property is not the source of a professional advantage, but rather the means to maintain an advantage that has been earned through innovation."

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Among its various topics, the book discusses an issue closely related to patents, that is, standardization. This is an area that is considered ever more urgent by experts, especially with regard to the new technology sector. "The relationship between intellectual property and standards is fairly controversial," says Granieri on the subject. "At present, the sectors in which you can create the conditions for standardization involve only a few subjects, who have a lot of capital and strong technical capabilities." Anyone whose business is focused on a standardized service or product must really understand patent rights to avoid the risk of ending up in a weak market position.

At the same time, present and future managers face an international system, and the problem is that, the bigger the market, the more bitter the battle for recognition of intellectual property. "International markets require that an increasing amount of attention be paid to patents and intellectual property." If we add to the already high costs for international production those equally high to support intellectual property, we realize that it is becoming more and more challenging for a small- to medium-sized business to protect their innovative ideas.