IP Intensive Industries Support 40 Million Jobs, According to US Dept. of Commerce


Last week, the U.S. Department of Commerce released the report entitled, “Intellectual Property and the U.S. Economy: Industries in Focus,” which highlighted the connection between Intellectual Property intensive-industries along with job creation and its relation to the U.S. economy. The report by the Economics and Statistics Administration and the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) identified 75 industries (from among 313, total) as IP-intensive.

The findings support a message President Obama and USPTO director David Kappos have been reiterating for some time: innovation is the key to economic growth within the United States. According to the USPTO, “The report not only estimates the contributions of these industries to the U.S. economy, but also gauges the ripple, or domino, effects they have on employment throughout the economy.”  The report specifically found that:

-These IP driven industries create 27.1 million jobs and indirectly support another 12.9 million jobs.

-Every two jobs in IP-intensive industries support an additional one job elsewhere in the economy.

-IP jobs contribute to approximately $5 trillion dollars to the U.S. gross domestic product.

-Goods from the IP-intensive industries account for 60% of all US exports.

-Patent- and copyright-intensive industries have seen particularly fast wage growth in recent years.

-The entire U.S. economy relies on some form of IP, because virtually every industry either produces intellectual property or uses it.

-Because patent-intensive industries are all in the manufacturing sector, they experienced relatively more employment losses over this period, especially during the past decade.

Emphasizing the importance of innovation has been an underlying theme at the USPTO. According to the summary of the report on USPTO.gov,

“Every job in some way, produces, supplies, consumes, or relies on innovation, creativity, and commercial distinctiveness,” said Under Secretary of Commerce for Intellectual Property and USPTO Director David Kappos. “America needs to continue investing in a high quality and appropriately balanced intellectual property system that will promote innovative, open, and competitive markets while helping to ensure that the U.S. private sector remains America’s innovation engine.”

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