Duncan Bucknell


Whoever has the best information is most likely to succeed and on their own terms. It is difficult to overstate the importance of high quality information to the development and execution of world class IP Strategy. The best IP Strategists are keen practitioners of competitive intelligence and analyse a wide variety of  information. I use checklists of information sources tuned to different kinds of issues – some are free, some paid and… Read More

There was a great discussion at the symposium yesterday on ‘IP Strategy, what has changed, what is changing?’ Here are my slides – I look forward to your comments too. IP Strategy – what has changed, what is changing? from DuncanBucknell

In 1993 I joined Derwent Information and by 1994 had put together a patents and competitive intelligence presentation that I would eventually give as far away from my home base as Fukuoka, Japan.  My approach was to target my host company and tell them something about themselves that I should not know.  On one early presentation in 1994, I almost fell into a credibility trap that I never forgot or repeated moving… Read More

Another IP strategy mistake is to overestimate competitors.  This mistake is not as rich in case examples as underestimating competitors because it tends to drive inaction.  We can see cases where it would have been easy to overestimate the competition, however.  RIM appeared to have a secure position in smartphones with BlackBerry before Apple and Android showed up.  Nike and Adidas dominated sports apparel – and then Under Armour appeared to stake… Read More

We wrote in a previous blog post that the greatest risk in strategy is to over or underestimate the risk.  This is why in the art of military strategy opponents work hard to deceive their adversaries.  Deception can cause adversaries to overestimate risk when they should not and underestimate risk when they should not, leading them to take actions that are against their best interests – for example attacking where you have… Read More

How can we understand the whole of the hundreds, sometime thousands of individual pieces of IP that can go into a single product solution?  Even if we can identify and collect all of it, can we really get a feel for the whole through a stack of patent, trademark, and other IP documents?  The answer is an emphatic no for just about anyone.  We can’t for the same fundamental reason that even… Read More

It’s all very well for external consultants to talk about what’s needed in IP Strategy.  Most IP Strategy is done in-house, with internal clients and with considerable personal risk. Here are 6 qualities we’ve noticed in those operating at a very high level as in-house IP Strategists.   Thank you to those brilliant internal IP Strategists that we work alongside. They make decisions Uncertainty is everywhere in IP Strategy, particularly for those faced… Read More

Einstein said: “life is like riding a bicycle. To keep your balance you must keep moving.” Similarly, with businesses and business strategy. A business that does not move forward will lose its balance between profiting from existing business enterprises and building (or acquiring) new enterprises for future growth. Consider Kodak, a US colossus recently in the news, that focused so heavily on its existing film business that it failed to effectively harness… Read More

Can you really have a cohesive IP Strategy at the corporate level? I don’t think so. Unless of course they are one and the same thing.  (Small companies with effectively one business unit obviously have the same IP Strategy for both.) Otherwise, each business unit needs its own defined IP Strategy – focused on the strategy and its execution required to meet its specific goals.  As soon as you start building a… Read More