Industry 4.0: Horizontal Integration and Intellectual Property Law Strategies In England

Marcelo Negri Soares, Marcos Eduardo Kauffman

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Intellectual Property (IP) is increasingly recognised as a paramount intangible asset influencing the value of companies, as well as their corporate strategies and management. This paper focuses on the impact of implementing Industry 4.0 (I4.0) on the management of IP in collaborative inter-organisational interconnected networks. Such interconnected networks will allow groups of companies, often competitors and/or customers, to share data and to collaborate in the design, development and manufacture of complex products and/or services, exchanging large amounts of proprietary technical data. Furthermore, this paper explores how companies can benefit from the interconnected network capabilities, whilst protecting them from any risks regarding the vulnerability of IP assets to misappropriation, unauthorized use or leakage. The focus of this study is the UK manufacturing industry, where formal contractual tools are being deployed to support IP management in collaborative projects. It relies on an in-depth study of IP management practices in the UK manufacturing supply chain to critically assess the current state of practice in order to provide answers to the risks emanating from IP management in this new and complex collaborative setting. This paper concludes that IP and contractual tools deployed in this new environment must be underpinned by the business strategy and the business model. In addition, changes to organisational structures are necessary to bring together functions that typically operate in silos in many manufacturing businesses, namely: Engineering, Information Technology, Commercial and Legal Departments.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)268-289
Number of pages22
JournalRevista Opinião Jurídica (Fortaleza)
Issue number23
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jul 2018

Bibliographical note

Copyright 2018 Revista Legal Opinion (Fortaleza) This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution license - Non-commercial - Share like 4.0 International.


  • Fourth Industrial Revolution
  • Intellectual Property
  • Business Strategy
  • Intellectual Property Strategy

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