Employee inventions and works for hire in Japan: A comparative study against the US, Chinese, and German systems

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearch


Although legislative provisions on employee inventions' and works for
hire' have existed for years, their application in many countries has been
relatively limited. Amid waves of informational revolution and rapid
technological advances, however, issues relating to employee inventions and
works for hire have gained increased significance. In this day and age, it is
imperative that employees' inventive and creative works be judiciously
handled under an effective legal system. Since Japanese companies have
amassed economic successes throughout the world, it would be interesting and instructive to study the Japanese system regarding employee inventions
and works for hire.

Accordingly, this article attempts to provide an overview of Japan's
regulatory system pertaining to employee inventions and works for hire,
focusing on industrial practices.' Nonetheless, in view of the trend of
university-industry alliance in technological research and development,
university practices with respect to employees' inventive or creative works
are briefly mentioned. In particular, the following issues are examined:
What rights does the employer have in the employee's inventive or creative
works? What rights does the employee have in his or her inventive or
creative works? For which types of inventive or creative works can the
employee obtain compensation? If the employee is compensated or
rewarded for inventive or creative works, in what form, for how much, and at
what time is the compensation given?
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)279-323
Number of pages44
JournalTemple International and Comparative Law Journal
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2002
Externally publishedYes


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