Tanja Saxell, Tuomas Takalo, Olena Izhak, 25 August 2020

There is a fundamental trade-off between incentives to develop new drugs and access to cheaper medicines. How should patent rights be designed in the pharmaceutical industry to optimally balance this trade-off? This column suggests that longer patent terms are an inefficient way of promoting the development of new drugs since they also increase incentives for challenging patents. Government policies should make patents shorter-lived, but broader in scope.

CEPR Policy Research