The Innovation and Intellectual Property Laboratory (INIP Lab) consists of an interdisciplinary group of researchers at Skoltech whose scholarship, empirical research, and innovative activity are united by a focus on the role of intellectual property in the process of technological innovation. The members of the Laboratory are drawn from a variety of academic fields and disciplines, including strategic management of technology, entrepreneurial strategy, intellectual property management, intellectual property law, business law, industrial engineering, aerospace engineering, organization studies, product development, information science, the management of complex systems, and innovation studies more generally (with some active in multiple fields). These researchers, despite the diversity of their skills, knowledge, and backgrounds, work together in a common academic domain, which is innovation and the management of intellectual property.

Intellectual Platform of the Innovation and Intellectual Property Laboratory

The research and innovation agenda of the Innovation and Intellectual Property Laboratory is based on the following four core convictions:

  1. Technological innovation, including technology entrepreneurship and the commercialization of science and technology, requires sophistication and prowess in managing intellectual property.
  2. Expertise in the management of intellectual property matters not just for lawyers, but also for a wide range of people involved in innovation, including: technology entrepreneurs, managers of established technology-intensive corporations, product designers, investors, technology-transfer professionals, R&D managers, innovation-oriented academic researchers, regional innovation infrastructure professionals, IP traders and specialized IP intermediaries, technology marketing professionals, software and IT service providers, and also public policy leaders.
  3. The management of intellectual property is already established as a vibrant functional domain in industry; and while academia has been much slower than industry in recognizing the central importance of IP management as a professional field, academia is beginning to catch up with industry in recognizing this field of management as a distinct function in business that deserves serious study in its own right, just like any other practical subject matter in business.
  4. Intellectual Property Management is becoming visible as a new academic field, and systematic high-quality research about the strategic management of intellectual property, within the process of technological innovation, is a field in which Skoltech can make an intellectual and practical contribution, both within Russia and internationally.


Current Research Projects of the Innovation and Intellectual Property Laboratory

  • Management of intellectual property in large-scale complex technological organizations and technological systems
  • The role of intellectual property in collaboration agreements between technology intensive corporations and their suppliers and partners
  • Outward-bound international patenting behavior and national economic development
  • Patent strategy for modular products and systems
  • Legal issues in the patenting of intangible technology
  • Intellectual property strategy, dynamic capabilities and international competition
  • Implications of recent trends in the law of patent-eligible subject matter on the strategies of entrepreneurial technology firms
  • Patent analysis as a tool for planning scientific and engineering research projects
  • Intellectual property and open-innovation
  • Strategies for solving the problems of backlog and unreliable examination quality in the global patent system
  • Intellectual property strategy and entrepreneurial technology strategy
  • Bibliometric analysis of patent and scientific literature for Stirling-cycle technology
  • Intellectual property and technology transfer from universities and research institutions
  • The historical relationship between technology and science in the development of energy conversion technology
  • The integration of intellectual property considerations in to the engineering design process
  • History of the field of quantum technology, as seen through the lens of patent data

Previous Research Projects of the Innovation and Intellectual Property Laboratory

·    Co-creation as an organizational strategy for new product development
·    Intellectual property rights and information technology, with a special emphasis on the protection of computer software inventions and issues related to software-as-service
·    Development of a context-enhanced patent analytics platform
·    Smart patent analysis for technology strategy and business intelligence (use of “big data” analytics for evaluation of patent information)
·    The role of intellectual property management in the international commercialization of lithium-ion battery technology
·    International licensing strategy and IP management in the satellite data industry
·    Legal issues in the localization of personal data in cloud computing services
·    Patent-eligible subject matter and innovation in biomedical technology
·    The strategic management of intellectual property in the development of digital gaming platforms for online education
·    Entrepreneurial ecosystems in Russia and strategies for the development of university-based innovation
·    Valuation of inventions through statistical analysis of patent data.

The INIP Lab meets periodically at Skoltech for round-table academic seminars on research related to innovation and intellectual property. Distinguished academic or practitioner guests sometimes also makes presentations. The purpose of these seminars is fourfold: (a) to provide constructive criticism of the research of each member of the group to improve the quality of his or her research and enhance the quality of subsequent publications; (b) to build up a shared intellectual territory and research culture at Skoltech in the field of innovation and intellectual property management; (c) to act as a seed-bed for ideas for future externally funded collaborative research projects; and, (d) to assist Ph.D. students to learn the art of carrying out academic research in a collegial academic environment. The seminars also constitute a practical component of the Innovation and Intellectual Property Studies Doctoral Seminar, which is a compulsory component of Skoltech’s Ph.D. program in Innovation and Intellectual Property Management.

Research Strategy of the Innovation and Intellectual Property Laboratory

The research strategy of the INIP Lab is based on recognizing that Intellectual Property Management is both an academic field in its own right and a lively zone for the interaction of other academic fields. Additionally, intellectual property management is a core function of the technological innovation process in business, making it centrally important to the academic mission of Skoltech. Intellectual property management lends itself to interdisciplinary research both within the domain of innovation studies and between innovation studies and fields of scientific and engineering research at Skoltech, such as bioinformatics, computer vision, data science, materials science & engineering, quantum technology, photonics, engineering design and energy technology, etc. Thus, academic work in intellectual property management may help synergize and facilitate practical innovation from scientific and engineering research at Skoltech. It may also be a focus for cooperation between our Laboratory and the various CREIs (Centers for Research, Education and Innovation) at Skoltech. Intellectual Property Management research at Skoltech is an integral part of the broader field of innovation studies.

Developing Innovation Studies by Leveraging Intellectual Property Management Research


Skoltech’s INIP Lab serves the distinctive internationally-oriented innovation mission of Skoltech, developed in partnership with MIT, by concentrating our efforts in a sub-field of innovation studies where we believe there is great opportunity for us to leverage our resources for maximum impact, both in Russia and internationally. That field is intellectual property management.

Skoltech’s INIP Lab and Russia’s Innovation Economy

There is a groundswell of interest in intellectual property emerging in Russia, including the topic of how Russian technology enterprises may flourish by skillfully utilizing the IP systems and markets of the rest of the world, as well as those of Russia. The extraordinary interest shown by the Russian public in Skolkovo’s IP Academy is one indication of that interest. Russia’s accession to the World Trade Organization, with the obligations that that has brought with it for Russia to fully develop its IP laws and institutions, is also a factor. Russia’s serious moves in this direction have also been recognized by the UN’s Geneva-based World Intellectual Property Organization, that has opened a satellite office in Moscow, located in Skolkovo. The IP Center of the Skolkovo Foundation is also active in this field, and provides relevant and useful IP management services to innovative enterprises in the broader Skolkovo community. We envision that by cultivating relationships with the range of institutions and people in Russia who are thirsty for knowledge about intellectual property and its role in technology-related business, we will find a welcome outlet for both our research and practical education-and-training services related to our research.