'For the newcomer to intellectual property, this book is a wonderful introduction to global innovation policy debates and the difficulties in identifying optimal patent strategies. For those in the field, the volume provides an engaging examination of the complex interactions among heterogeneous national priorities, demands for an efficient environment for global trade in knowledge-intensive assets, and the capabilities of various international institutions – particularly WIPO and the WTO – to foster the development of, and administer, sound international patent policy.' – Rochelle Dreyfuss, New York University School of Law, US 'In this book, Alex Stack raises and explores critically important questions with respect to this body of experience: When is international patent law cooperation and harmonization welfare-enhancing? What is the role of international institutions – WIPO and the WTO – in furthering such harmonization? Stack explores these questions from a global welfarist, rationalist perspective. Using tools from new institutional economics, he explores design implications for international institutions, focusing on WIPO and the WTO, analyzing grounds for international cooperation as collective action problems and applying historical, political and transaction cost analysis. . . This book provides a subtle, insightful, and original analysis of the evolution of institutional arrangements for the international harmonization of patent laws that will be of immense value to scholars and practitioners involved in international harmonization efforts in intellectual property and cognate areas of commercial law. It will surely quickly become accepted as the seminal reference work in these fields.' – From the foreword by Michael Trebilcock, University of Toronto, Canada When is international patent law cooperation and harmonization welfare-enhancing? What is the role of international institutions – WIPO and the WTO – in furthering such harmonization? This book explores these questions from a global welfarist, rationalist perspective. It grounds its analysis in innovation theory and a examination of patent law and prosecution, incorporating the uncertainty of patent law's impact on welfare at a detailed level, dynamic changes, the skewed nature of patent value and the difficulty of textually capturing patent concepts. Using tools from new institutional economics, it explores future design implications for international institutions, analyzing grounds for international cooperation as collective action problems and applying historical, political and transaction cost analyses. Academics, students and practitioners interested in international economic law, specifically in respect of patents, innovation and intellectual property, the TRIPs Agreement, the WTO and WIPO will find this book essential. It will also prove insightful for researchers whose primary background is in international relations or international political economy, but are seeking an introduction to the patent and intellectual property field.