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Civil-Comp Proceedings
ISSN 1759-3433
CCP: 97
Edited by: Y. Tsompanakis, B.H.V. Topping
Paper 33

Application of a Fuzzy Inference System to Patent Strategy Analysis of Fall Protection Technology

W-D. Yu1, S-T. Cheng1, Y-H. Lai2, C-C. Lin3, C-M. Wu2 and S-S. Lou4

1Institute of Construction Management, 2Department of Technological Management, Chung Hua University, Hsinchu, Taiwan
3Institute of Occupational Safety and Health, Council of Labor Affairs, Taiwan
4Department of Food & Beverage Management, China University of Science and Technology, Hsinchu, Taiwan

Full Bibliographic Reference for this paper
W-D. Yu, S-T. Cheng, Y-H. Lai, C-C. Lin, C-M. Wu, S-S. Lou, "Application of a Fuzzy Inference System to Patent Strategy Analysis of Fall Protection Technology", in Y. Tsompanakis, B.H.V. Topping, (Editors), "Proceedings of the Second International Conference on Soft Computing Technology in Civil, Structural and Environmental Engineering", Civil-Comp Press, Stirlingshire, UK, Paper 33, 2011. doi:10.4203/ccp.97.33
Keywords: technological strategy, patent analysis, fuzzy inference system, fall protection technology.

Construction technology innovation plays an important role in the advancement of the industry. As a result of world trade globalization, the competitiveness of the construction market has become more severe than ever. Technology innovation has been considered an important strategy to succeed in the global competition. According to the statistics of WIPO, 90~95% of economically valuable human innovation results are retained in patent databases [1]. The patent databases offer valuable information for technological strategic planning. Patent analysis techniques are widely adopted in planning the firm's technological innovation strategies. It is found from the literature that patent analysis has been successfully applied in high-tech industries (e.g. the ICT industry and the biotech industry) for technological strategic planning. However, the construction industry has been lagging behind in the adopting this powerful tool. The massive and complicated information provided by various patent analysis techniques usually hinders construction engineers from adoption of such tools. It is highly desirable to develop a more user-friendly and systematic approach to utilize the information provided by patent analysis techniques.

This paper describes a method that integrates a fuzzy inference system (FIS) and patent analysis information for technological strategy planning of personal fall protection equipment. The proposed patent analysis based fuzzy inference system (PABFIS) adopts fuzzy IF-THEN rules for the strategic planning, which is useful for construction technological managers in planning appropriate strategies for technology research and development. The critical attributes for inputs of the FIS including patent quantity (PQ), revealed patent advantage (RPA), patent activity (PA), be cited rate (BCR), and relative citing index (RCI) are collected and calculated from computer aided patent analysis systems. Qualitative fuzzy decision rules are collected and summarized from literature. Parameters of membership functions associated with fuzzy terms of the IF-THEN rules are automatically constructed using a Kohonen learning algorithm based on the attribute values of the firms within the target group identified by a multi-dimensional scaling (MDS) method. The most appropriate technology strategies are inferred and suggested by the PABFIS based on the input attribute values from patent analyses. A case study on fall protection technology is conducted. The Taiwan (TIPO) and US (USPTO) patent databases are selected for case study to demonstrate the proposed method.

H. Ernst, "Evaluation of Dynamic Technological Developments by Means of Patent Data", in K. Brockhoff, A.K. Chakrabarti, J. Hauschildt, (Editors), "The Dynamics of Innovation: Strategic and Managerial Implications", Springer, 107-132, 1999.

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