42 Intellectual Property Statistics to Shape IP’s Future

June 5, 2023

Intellectual Property Statistics

Intellectual property (IP) has become a fundamental pillar of innovation and economic growth. Many organizations worldwide use IP management software to centralize all intellectual property rights, trademarks, and patents in a single repository, enabling easy monitoring and tracking.

The statistics and data surrounding IP offer insight into the health of industries, trends in innovation, and the dynamics of international competition. Intellectual property statistics highlight IP's significance in the modern world and delve into the latest landscape shifts. 

From the surge of patent filings to the role of trademarks in branding, we’re going to present a comprehensive view of IP's critical role in fueling creativity, encouraging invention, and shaping the economy.

Top intellectual property statistics

Intellectual property represents a broad category of property created through an individual or group's mental effort and creativity. It includes inventions, works of art, designs, symbols, names, and images used in commerce.

Intellectual properties comprise patents, copyrights, trademarks, and trade secrets. Let's dive into exciting trends in IP to understand where it's heading in the foreseeable future.

  • 22% of all tech innovations come from the US.
  • Intellectual property-intensive industries contribute to 27.7% of US jobs. The same sectors also contribute to 38.2% of the US GDP.
  • Workers in the copyright industry earn wages that are 38% higher than other US workers.
  • Intellectual property constitutes 70% of the value of publicly listed corporations'.
  • The US leads the world regarding the intellectual property environment with a score of 95.48 points as of 2023, followed by the UK and France.
  • The health sector was a prominent area for trademark applicants in India and the US in 2021. 
  • Global patent filings rose by 3.6% in 2021. 
  • Between 2018 and 2020, China, South Korea, and the US filed the most applications in the computer technology sector. During the same period, most filings from Japan were in electrical machinery, and Germany's were in transport.
  • In 2021, nine of the top 20 IP offices were based in either low- or middle-income countries. These countries included Mexico with 199,389 filings, Indonesia with 127,142, Vietnam with 113,079, and Argentina with 85,844 filings.

Intellectual property theft statistics

Intellectual property theft is a serious and growing issue in which individuals or entities infringe on the IP rights of others. They copy, steal, or otherwise unlawfully use the creators’ patented inventions, copyrighted works, trademarks, or trade secrets without consent. 

Intellectual property theft profoundly affects businesses, industries, and economies. It results in significant financial losses for the victims and can damage a company’s brand reputation.

Keep reading for some statistics that unveil the state of intellectual property theft. 

  • Annually, around 12,000 intellectual property cases are registered.
  • About 21.7% of US chief financial officers believe their companies fell victim to intellectual property theft.

$4.35 million

was the average cost per data breach in 2022.

Source: Statista

  • The US saw the confiscation of $1.03 billion worth of counterfeit goods from China due to the intellectual property theft trade.

Intellectual property theft can stifle innovation and economic growth. Businesses need robust internal protocols for protecting their work. These protocols include implementing strict access controls and using non-disclosure agreements. 

Intellectual property litigation statistics

IP litigation involves legal disputes over the use, ownership, or infringement of IP rights, including patents, copyrights, trademarks, and trade secrets. IP litigation can be a high-stakes process, given the value often tied to intellectual property rights. It requires specialized legal knowledge, not only of IP law but also of the specific type of IP involved and the industry in which the dispute has arisen.

Let's look at the state of IP litigation through a statistical lens.

  • Defending a patent lawsuit costs up to $3 million.


of intellectual property cases result in a voluntary settlement.

Source: Stanford University

  • Patent lawsuits witnessed a year-over-year increase of 9% in January 2020.
  • Mediation costs average $100,000 per intellectual property case.
  • Only 13.4% of cases result in damage awards.

Because intellectual property is often protected by different countries' laws, IP litigation can also have a significant international dimension. As such, it may involve navigating different legal systems, international treaties, and conventions, especially in cases where infringement occurs across borders.

Patent statistics

Patent owners can exclude others from making, selling, using, or importing an invention for a set time period in exchange for publicly disclosing information.  

Let's discover the trends in patent filing and management through these stats.

  • High and medium-high technology manufacturing industries were granted more than 80% of manufacturing industry patents.
  • Patent-holding firms make up 90% of US exporters.
  • In India, the number of examined patent applications was 67,727 in 2021, a decrease from 70,924 in 2020. However, granted patents increased by 15.66% in 2021.
  • The highest number of patent grants (695,946) was in China in 2021, followed by the US with 327,307.
  • China also led international (PCT) patent applications with a total of 70,015 in 2022, followed by the US and Japan.


patent cases were filed nationwide in 2022.

Source: Mayer Brown

  • The total volume of patent filings worldwide amounted to 3.4 million in 2021.
  • The proportion of worldwide patent applications originating from Asia grew from 54.6% in 2011 to 67.6% in 2021.
  • Regarding resident patent applications per unit of GDP (USD 100 billion), South Korea filed the most in 2021, with 8,159 applications. China and Japan followed with 5,738 and 4,341 patent applications per unit of GDP, respectively.

In most countries, patent rights fall under civil law, and the patent holder must sue someone infringing the patent to enforce their rights. 

Trademark statistics 

A trademark is a distinctive symbol, logo, or word representing a company or product. It's an essential aspect of intellectual property, as well as branding and marketing strategies.

Trademarks identify and distinguish a company's goods or services from those of other entities. They prevent customer confusion in the marketplace by clearly indicating the sources.

  • Globally, the US trademark office holds 4.5% of all filed trademarks.
  • The Trade Mark Registry in India saw a 13.78% increase in applications and a 33.96% increase in registrations in 2021 compared to 2020.
  • China held the most active trademark registrations at 37.2 million, followed by the US with 2.8 million and India with 2.6 million. China's office was responsible for over half (52.1%) of the world's trademark filing activity, most of which originated from Chinese residents.

13.9 million

trademark applications were filed across the world in 2021.

Source: WIPO

  • Research and technology, along with leisure and education, were among the top three sectors that attracted trademark applications originating from France, Germany, and the US.
  • The agriculture sector was a top-three sector for trademark applications in China, France, and India in 2021.
  • Clothing and accessories ranked third in terms of attracting trademark applications from those based in China and India.

Industrial design statistics

Industrial design is a specific category of IP that refers to a product's aesthetic or ornamental aspect. Unlike patents, which cover the functional aspects of products, or trademarks that protect brand identifiers, industrial design protection focuses on the visual appeal of a product.

Let's look at some notable statistics to learn more about industrial design's current state.

  • Applications for utility models, a distinct type of patent right, declined to 2.9 million in 2021, a 2.5% drop.
  • Industrial design registrations rose globally by 10.9% in 2021 to about 5.3 million.
  • The countries with the most industrial design registrations were China (2.6 million), South Korea (388,500), and the US (381,549).
  • The UK experienced the highest annual growth in the number of designs received in 2021, with an increase of 128.5%.
  • Turkey and the US also witnessed robust growth in the number of application designs, recording increases of 38.3% and 17.2%, respectively.
  • Conversely, Germany and South Korea observed a dip in the number of application designs in 2021, with respective decreases of 9% and 2.2%.

Keep intellectual property safe

Our deep dive into IP statistics reveals intriguing trends, offering insight into national and international policies, economic health, technological dominance, and innovation capacities. However, these statistics also illuminate the obstacles, such as IP theft and costly litigation, underscoring the importance of robust laws, vigilant enforcement, and global cooperation in safeguarding IP rights.

But there’s no reason to believe that we can’t rise to the occasion and face down those challenges. From patent filings to trademark registrations and from copyright claims to industrial design protections, each facet of intellectual property conveys a story of human ingenuity and entrepreneurial spirit.

Learn more about intellectual property and understand why you should protect yours.

intellectual property management software
What's mine is mine.

Find the right intellectual property management software for keeping track of trademarks, copyrights, patents, and other intellectual property.

intellectual property management software
What's mine is mine.

Find the right intellectual property management software for keeping track of trademarks, copyrights, patents, and other intellectual property.

42 Intellectual Property Statistics to Shape IP’s Future Intellectual property (IP) refers to assets created through the mental and creative efforts of professionals. Learn more about IP theft trends. https://learn.g2.com/hubfs/G2CM_FI610_Learn_Article_Images_%5BIntellectual_Property_Statistics%5D_V1b.png
Sagar Joshi Sagar Joshi is a former content marketing specialist at G2 in India. He is an engineer with a keen interest in data analytics and cybersecurity. He writes about topics related to them. You can find him reading books, learning a new language, or playing pool in his free time. https://learn.g2.com/hubfs/Sagar%20JoshiUpdated.jpeg https://www.linkedin.com/in/sagarjoshi9/

Never miss a post.

Subscribe to keep your fingers on the tech pulse.

By submitting this form, you are agreeing to receive marketing communications from G2.