Max Planck Institute for Innovation and Competition

Max Planck Institute for Innovation and Competition

The Max Planck Institute for Innovation and Competition was founded in Munich in 1966 as the Institute for Foreign and International Patent, Copyright and Competition Law. During the following decades, it became instrumental in the development of the areas of law that it dealt with. In 2002, in conjunction with new appointments, its scope of research was extended to include core areas of antitrust law and tax law - hence, the change of the Institute’s name to the Max Planck Institute for Intellectual Property, Competition and Tax Law. After the establishment of an additional department for financial economics in 2008, this Institute was replaced, with effect from January 1, 2011, by the MPI for Intellectual Property and Competition Law and the MPI for Tax Law and Public Finance. Together with the MPI for Foreign and International Social Law, these two Institutes form the Munich-based Max Planck Campus for Legal and Economic Research. In 2013, the Max Planck Institute for Intellectual Property and Competition Law was expanded to include a new, economics-oriented department (Innovation and Entrepreneurship Research); in 2014 the Institute changed its name to Max Planck Institute for Innovation and Competition.


Marstallplatz 1
80539 München
Phone: +49 89 24246-0
Fax: +49 89 24246-501

PhD opportunities

This institute has no International Max Planck Research School (IMPRS).

The Directors as well as some researchers of the Institute also teach as Professors and Honorary Professors at universities, including in particular the Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität in Munich. It is in that capacity that they also supervise their own PhD students at these universities. The Institute also accepts external PhD students as scholarship holders and guest researchers. Further information can be found on the website of the Institute and on the websites of the law schools with which the Directors and other researchers at the Institute are affiliated.

Department Intellectual Property and Competition Law more
Department Innovation and Entrepreneurship Research more
Department Intellectual Property and Competition Law more
'Start-ups are the main drivers of growth'
Dietmar Harhoff is Director at the Max Planck Institute for Innovation and Competition where he heads the Department of Innovation and Entrepreneurship Research. As Chairman of the Commission of Experts for Research and Innovation (EFI), he also advises the German government on innovation issues. In the run-up to the CeBIT, taking place in Hanover from 14 to 18 March, we spoke with him about how future-proof German industry is in the digital age, the role of start-ups, and the latest buzzword, “Industry 4.0”. more
Experts published a declaration according to 20 years TRIPS agreement more

The German economy is booming, with research and development seeing welcome growth in recent years. However, our author, Chair of the German government’s Commission of Experts for Research and Innovation (EFI), warns that we shouldn’t content ourselves with our achievements to date. Germany still has some catching up to do, particularly when it comes to digital infrastructure and the internet offerings of German public authorities and ministries. But higher education institutions and young, innovative businesses need support from the new federal government, as well.

No job offers available

Study on Supplementary Protection Certificates

2018 Kur, Annette; Romandini, Roberto
Supplementary Protection Certificates (SPC) prolong patent protection in the field of pharmacological and plant protection products. A study at the Max-Planck-Institute for Innovation and Competition examines the functioning of the system and proposes reforms. These proposals concern especially the elimination of uncertainties created by, among others, the case law of the Court of Justice of the European Union, the development of a union-wide system as well as the expansion of the existing exceptions and limitations. more

Access to data in the data-driven economy

2017 Richter, Heiko; Surblytė, Gintarė; Wiedemann, Klaus

Business models in the digital economy are increasingly based on the collection, analysis and use of data. However, the legal framework addressing general issues of access to and control of data is complex and not entirely clear. Given the importance of access to data and in light of the EU Commission’s “free flow of data” initiative, a working group of the Max Planck Institute for Innovation and Competition digs deeper into questions of the data-driven economy, in particular the need and the optimal scope of data-related regulation.


Patent Litigation in Europe

2017 Gaessler, Fabian; Harhoff, Dietmar

The economics department of the Max Planck Institute for Innovation and Competition participated in a research cooperation with other national and international institutions on the judicial enforcement of patent rights. The project comprised the data collection of patent litigation cases in several European countries and their analysis in the context of national jurisdictions. The research project addressed the analysis of the fragmented European system on effectiveness and efficiency to settle patent disputes.


Governance and the Efficiency of Economic Systems

2016 Harhoff, Dietmar; Stoll, Sebastian
Jurisprudence Social and Behavioural Sciences

The department “Innovation and Entrepreneurship Research” participated in the Collaborative Research Centre/Transregio 15 “Governance and the Efficiency of Economic Systems” funded by the German Research Foundation (DFG) focusing on the development of Intellectual Property Rights (IPR) systems, notably patents and trademark rights. The research addressed the rapid changes in IPR systems and their implications on market structures. The research contribution lies in the theoretic economic analysis of IPR systems and empirical analysis of extensive data sets.


Standard essential patents: The role of standard setting organizations

2016 Conde Gallego, Beatriz; Drexl, Josef; Harhoff, Dietmar

During the last years standard essential patents (SEPs) have been subject to intensive litigation worldwide. Apart from their significant economic harm, patent wars, especially in the information and telecommunication sector, have a negative impact on innovation. As key players in the standard setting context, standard setting organizations (SSOs) can contribute considerably to solve SEP-related problems. The Max Planck Institute for Innovation and Competition explores in the framework of an interdisciplinary project how the legal framework for a self-regulation by SSOs should be designed.

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