Year of Publication



Martin School of Public Policy and Administration

Date Available


Executive Summary

The creation of new processes and technology - in a word, innovation - is a powerful factor that determine s the progress of economies. The creation of new processes and technology can be accelerated by Intellectual Property Rights (IPRs).

However, many Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (SMEs) do not get the most out of their use of the intellectual property, even though they represent over 90 percent of enterprise s in South Korea. As a result, the Korean Intellectual Property Office (KIPO) has initiated support services for Small and Medium-sized Enterprises.

This study 's main focus is to examine the impact of the IP Star program, which aims to foster the creation and utilization of intellectual property by small and medium sized enterprises. I investigates whether the IP Star program has achieved its intended goals: (1) whether the program increases the creation of intellectual property, (2) whether the policy has a positive impact on sales by the beneficiary group.

In order to assess the impact, I collect panel data which would allow the possibility of observing the before- and after-effects on individual firms as well as providing the possibility of isolating the effects of treatment from other factors affecting the outcome (Cheng Hsiao, 2006).

The panel data analysis provides the following results:

  • The IP Star program is significantly associated with increased registration of intellectual property rights.
  • However, the IP star program does not have a positive impact on sales.

Based on the findings, I make the following recommendations:

  • Business performance should be measured by several dimensions: return on investment; growth, including increase in sales, employees or market share; and profit, including return on sales and net profit margin. For this reason, KIPO should collect these data, which enable it to assess the impact of the IP Star program on the firm's performance.
  • Even though the IP Star program has a positive impact on the production of intellectual property, it does not guarantee quality.
  • For this reason, the IP Star program needs to focus on how to improve the quality of new intellectual property. At the beginning of developing technology, the IP Star program can identify the intellectual property right type (Patent, Trade Secret, Utility model, etc) to protect innovation and also align it to contribute firm's goals or growth. Considering expensive litigation can have a devastating impact on small and medium sized companies, the IP Star program needs to provide an intellectual strategy to avoid litigation.



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