+1 Recommend
1 collections

      If you have found this article useful and you think it is important that researchers across the world have access, please consider donating, to ensure that this valuable collection remains Open Access.

      Prometheus is published by Pluto Journals, an Open Access publisher. This means that everyone has free and unlimited access to the full-text of all articles from our international collection of social science journalsFurthermore Pluto Journals authors don’t pay article processing charges (APCs).

      • Record: found
      • Abstract: found
      • Article: found
      Is Open Access

      Innovation after Brexit

      Pluto Journals


            Brexit is intended to return autonomy for law-making to the UK Parliament, and this opportunity could be used to improve intellectual property laws. These were originally drafted to support innovation, but like other laws of property they were captured by interests. The result is that their original function has been far surpassed in economic importance by their use for moving corporate profits to and through tax havens for tax evasion and avoidance. Although an opportunity to improve information protection laws may indeed result, Britain has never been a leader in drafting these, compared with Germany and the United States. Also, to the extent that better laws could refocus investment on technological innovation, and away from financial innovation, it could be expected that they would be opposed by interests with a major stronghold in the City of London. Reference is made to specific proposals for change already advanced in Prometheus, to which is added a new suggestion about how more generous overhead payments from public funding of innovation could help to stimulate more firms to bid for this. Also, a proposal is made for a means of rectifying a series of legal decisions which have had the effect of denying firms the ability to benefit from new ideas offered by outsiders.


            Author and article information

            Pluto Journals
            1 June 2016
            : 34
            : 2 ( doiID: 10.1080/prometheus.34.issue-2 )
            : 85-94
            School of Business, Trinity College, Dublin, Ireland
            © 2016 Pluto Journals

            All content is freely available without charge to users or their institutions. Users are allowed to read, download, copy, distribute, print, search, or link to the full texts of the articles in this journal without asking prior permission of the publisher or the author. Articles published in the journal are distributed under a http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/.

            Custom metadata

            Computer science,Arts,Social & Behavioral Sciences,Law,History,Economics


            1. Bessen, J. and Meurer, M. (2008) Patent Failure: How Judges, Bureaucrats and Lawyers Put Innovators at Risk, Princeton University Press, Princeton NJ.

            2. Burke, A. and Hanley, A. (2010) ‘Market concentration and new firm survival in dynamic versus static industries’, International Journal of Entrepreneurial Venturing, 1, 3, pp.327-45.

            3. European Commission (2016) Final Commission Decision, C, 5605, Brussels, 30 August.

            4. House of Lords (1851) ‘Reports and minutes of the evidence’, Select Committee appointed to consider the bills for the amendment of the law touching letters patent for invention, Parliamentary Papers, XVIII.

            5. Kingston, W. (2015) ‘Restoring the primacy of technological innovation’, Prometheus, 33, 1, pp.21-41.

            6. Kingston, W. (2017) How Capitalism Destroyed Itself, Edward Elgar, Cheltenham.

            7. Klepper, S. (2010) ‘The origin and growth of industry clusters: the making of Silicon Valley and Detroit’, Journal of Urban Economics, 67, 1, pp.15-30.

            8. Machlup, F. and Penrose, E. (1950) ‘The patent controversy in the nineteenth century’, Journal of Economic History, 10, 1, pp.1-29.

            9. Murmann, J. (2003) Knowledge and Competitive Advantage, Cambridge University Press, Cambridge.

            10. Ricardo, D. (1971 [1817]) Principles of Political Economy, Penguin, London.

            11. Rodrik, D. (2011) The Globalizaton Paradox: Why Global Markets, States and Democracy Can't Coexist, Oxford University Press, Oxford.

            12. Schumpeter, J. (1994 [1942]) Capitalism, Socialism and Democracy, George Allen & Unwin, London.

            13. Schumpeter, J. (1947) ‘Innovation: the creative impulse’, Journal of Economic History, 7, 2, pp.149-59.

            14. Sell, S. (2003) Private Power, Public Law: The Globalization of Intellectual Property, Cambridge University Press, Cambridge.

            15. UK Patent Office (n.d.) Opinions: resolving patent disputes, available from https://www.gov.uk/guidance/opinions-resolving-patent-disputes [accessed February 2017].


            Comment on this article