CPIP, USPTO, & Lemelson Center Host “Great Inventors” Panel Discussion at American History Museum

On February 16, 2017, CPIP hosted a panel discussion, America as a Place of Innovation: Great Inventors and the Patent System, at the Smithsonian National Museum of American History in Washington, D.C. The event was co-hosted by the Lemelson Center for the Study of Invention and Innovation at the Smithsonian Institution and the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO).

The panel explored the history of innovation and the broader social, political, and legal context in which it occurred in the late nineteenth century in the United States. The panel addressed the historical role of patents, research-intensive startups, litigation, and licensing in an important period of disruptive innovation.

Prof. Ernest Freeberg, University of Tennessee, discussed Thomas Edison and how the invention of the electric light impacted American culture. Prof. Christopher Beauchamp, Brooklyn Law School, discussed Alexander Graham Bell and the legal disputes that erupted out of Bell’s telephone patent. Prof. Adam Mossoff, Antonin Scalia Law School, George Mason University, discussed early American innovation by Charles Goodyear, Samuel Morse, and Joseph Singer.

The panel discussion was moderated by Arthur Daemmrich, Director of the Lemelson Center for the Study of Invention and Innovation. Alan Marco, Chief Economist at the United States Patent and Trademark Office delivered the closing remarks.

The video of the event is available here, and the event program is available here.