Patentopia is an academic project to extract lists of patents associated with either 1) specific inventors; or 2) specific firms.  It was designed originally to study patent outcomes related to United States grants to small businesses but has since expanded to generate patents as predictors as well.  In addition, the patent’s back and forward citations are extracted, as well.

Patentopia has tools to help disambiguate names, particularly at the individual level.  Because this tool is designed for American inventors and firms, the output excludes patents associated only with non-US inventors.  However, the presence of even a single US location for an inventor causes it to be captured in the data.

This was designed to retrieve patents associated with small businesses but can be used for larger firms, in principle.  However, this capability has not been rigorously tested and could potentially take hours. In addition, Patentopia runs on Amazon Web Services and thus the processing time may vary with server load, as well as with the full input size.  We recommend starting with a small test file before running your entire data set.

An input file indexed by inventor (i.e., Principal Investigator/PI search) takes much longer than one indexed by firm because the disambiguation challenges for names are more significant.  Read more here.

This process works by using the Application Programming Interfaces (APIs) released by the United States Patent and Trademark Office . However, many public policy scholars, economists, and others interested in patent data do not have experience writing code that uses APIs.

The MINERVA group is the home of the Patentopia project, an interface to help scholars access the patent database.  Terms and conditions include:

  • This is only for academic use.
  • The MINERVA group does not make any statements regarding the accuracy of these data.
  • This site is under development and we welcome your feedback regarding desired output (email LosAngelesNode at gmail dot com).

To use this, you will have to create an account.  Your email information will never be distributed or used in any way, except to communicate with you about your data.

Upon successful completion of the Patentopia software, we will remove your files.  However, in the event of a problematic run, we will keep your data so we can work with you to resolve the issues.

Info for scholars
Hints for disambiguation
Code inner workings
Use the tool now!