Acknowledge the individual inventors outside academia, as central for the origin of innovation

A growing number of researchers confirm that most western innovations come from individual inventors in their own enterprizes or employed in companies.

To quote innovation researcher Christian Sandström:

…for Sweden to remain an innovative economy, its government policy needs focusing on strengthening the conditions for enterprizes and individual inventors to realize the values of their innovations. The industrial potential is far bigger than the academic and an innovation policy that assumes universities are central for innovation will certainly give only marginal results...


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Bourelos. E. (2013) “Knowledge creation and technology transfer: An analysis of Swedish academics”, doktorsavhandling vid Institutionen för ekonomi och samhälle, Handelshögskolan vid Göteborgs universitet.

Henderson R., Jaffe A., Trajtenberg M. (1998) “Universities as a source of commercial technology: a detailed analysis of university patenting 1965 - 1988”, Rev. of Economics and Statistics 80, pp. 199 - 127.

Jewkes, J., Sawers, D. and Stillerman, R. (1958), The Sources of Invention, London: MacMillan (rev. edn. 1969)

Lissoni, F., Llerena, P., McKelvey, M., Sanditov, B. (2008) Academic patenting in Europe: new evidence from the KEINS database,” Research Evaluation, Oxford University Press, vol. 17(2), pages 87-102. June.

Sandström, C. (2014) ”Var skapades Sveriges 100 främsta innovationer?”. Reforminstitutet; Ratio och Chalmers tekniska högskola.

Larsson, J. (2015 “Innovation utan entreprenörskap?”. Näringspolitiskt forum, Rapport#10

Donald Norman, (Northwestern University, University of California, San Diego, Nielsen Norman Group, Korea Advanced Institute of Science & Technology, MIT, University of Pennsylvania)

Dr Roland Strauss, MD Knowledge4Innovation; “Innovation needs more than research”

Scott Barry Kaufman, Scientific Director of the Imagination Institute, researcher in Positive Psychology Center at the University of Pennsylvania;



Establish ethical IPR/ ”Fair IPR”

All intellectual property rights, ever since the Statute of Queen Anne in 1710, serves to set incentives to stimulate societal, intellectual and technological growth. In short; to give a creator an exclusive time-limited right to commercialize his or her work, thus securing the creator's will to invest time, money and efforts in developing products, methods and systems useful to society.

Lately, however, this safeguarding has started to erode, particularly in the field of patents. There's a grave economic imbalance in legal processing to the inventors great disadvantage. In practise, patent infringement in Sweden is in fact profitable for a company today. The judicial consequences are marginal and the company's legal costs can simply be considered an ordinary expense.

Society needs to consider IPR infringement as seriously as any other form of theft or major economic crime.

Launching the general concept of ethical IPR – in accordance with SDG and other ethical norms; sustainability, equality, climate preservation, fair trade – would be an important step.

Without the inventor's incentive, the perhaps strongest motive for investing time, efforts and money in creating, inventing, problem-solving, is lost.


Process theft of patent/illegally acquired IPR under common law

No legal processes concerning patent theft have been tried in Swedish law during the last decades. To have this kind of cases tried, 'special circumstances' must be revoked.

In effect, companies that illegally acquire patents run a very marginal risk of legal consequences.

The Swedish Eco Crime Authority are instructed not to prosecute cases of infringement or theft where individuals are victims.

The inventor/innovator represents very special values to society, due to the enormous potential in technological and industrial values this individual might have created.

This is common knowledge for big companies. And those of them illegally acquiring IP rights are also well aware of the marginal risk of legal consequences, since the Swedish judicial system in effect doesn't consider it an economic crime.


Allocate adequate financial resources to the inventors/innovators outside universities and research facilities

In the Swedish government budget research funding upholds approximately €6 billion, giving Sweden a high placement in international comparison.

Of the Swedish annual R&D budget of approximately €3,2 billion, €1,6 billion is allocated directly to universities and another €1 billion goes to the national research funding institutions and authorities such as Vinnova, Vetenskapsrådet, Forte and Formas.

The federal funding available for innovators and inventors outside academia is approximately €20 million.

An efficient innovation strategy must be based on statistic and historic evidence of the main sources of industrial and societal development and innovation, so that the government funding is proportionally distributed accordingly.

As the government annually supports research facilities and universities, it should accordingly annually support the inventor associations coaching, counseling and incubating activities.


Map the origin of innovations

For a national efficient innovation policy, the origin of innovations must be considered to be central for decisions on where to direct financial support. The innovators council suggests that awareness on this is widened and broadened through a thorough, national mapping of Swedens organized inventors.

Such a survey could cover: geographic region, gender, land of birth, grade of education, age, number of inventions/innovations, applied and/or granted patents etc


Through the Swedish National Innovators relations with IFIA, a similar international mapping survey would be possible to conduct.


Create an interface between Swedens micro-/small businesses and the inventors

Historically, every successful company has, practically without exception, started out as a micro business. The largest international Swedish companies (ABB, Akzo Nobel, Alfa Laval, Ericsson, IKEA, Sandvik, SCA, SKF, Swedish Match, Atlas Copco, Tetrapack, Telia Sonera, Stora Enso mfl) all were started by one, two or three people around one single unique invention.


Swedens approx. 260 000 micro companies lack inhouse resources for continuous R&D. Swedens more than 5000 inventors/innovators could provide continuous product development to them.