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Identifying NIST Impacts on Patenting: A Novel Data Set and Potential Uses



Gary W. Anderson Jr.


The National Institute of Standards and Technology’s (NIST) mission is to “promote U.S. innovation and industrial competitiveness.” To meet this mission, NIST scientists produce a great variety of scientific and technical outputs. This paper present results from a novel effort to measure usage and impact of a more complete set of these technical outputs including patents, publications, data software, reference materials and a variety of additional formal and informal scientific outputs. Previously used metrics understate NIST’s true impact on invention and do not indicate usage of NIST scientific output by other inventors. The results indicate the high quality of NIST scientific and technical outputs. Identifying the magnitude and varied usage of different types of NIST outputs represents a significant improvement in NIST impact metrics. The results clearly indicate that different companies, industries and technologies rely on different types of NIST technical outputs. Therefore, reliance on a limited set of technology transfer tools by either researchers or policy makers creates a risk that NIST knowledge and capabilities will not be transferred to and adopted by businesses and other organizations. Finally, the data developed here suggest a number of new technology transfer metrics that promote shared technology transfer responsibilities and may focus attention on activities that increase the impact of current research without fundamentally altering the character of this research.
Journal of Research (NIST JRES) -


Innovation Metrics, Patent Citations, Economic Impact, Technology Transfer


Anderson, G. (2017), Identifying NIST Impacts on Patenting: A Novel Data Set and Potential Uses, Journal of Research (NIST JRES), National Institute of Standards and Technology, Gaithersburg, MD, [online], (Accessed April 19, 2024)
Created January 13, 2017, Updated November 14, 2018