- What do researchers do? Labour market information
- Occupational information
- Other common doctoral occupations
- Patent examiner, agent and officer
Patent examiner, agent and officer
Between 2006 and 2009, 0.1% of working doctoral graduates or 15 employed doctoral graduates, are known to have been working as patent examiners, agents or officers six months after graduation.
Patent examiners are included in the ‘other common doctoral occupations' employment cluster.
Patent examiners assess applications for patents, which are granted to inventors to give them the right to stop other people using, selling or making their inventions. Patent examiners check that the invention is new, not merely an adjustment to something which already exists, by carrying out searches using UK and foreign patent specifications, technical literature and databases, and make sure the application meets the formal requirements of The UK Intellectual Property Office (IPO) or European Patent Office (EPO) and is technically sound. Patent examiners develop specialist expertise within a particular area such as biotechnology or electrical engineering, but opportunities may arise to change subject specialisms.