Additive Manufacturing and Innovation: Technical, Economic, Legal, and Policy Related Aspects of Rising Technologies (AdManI).
This research project is an international collaborative study that aimed at ascertaining ground breaking results on fundamental questions related to intellectual property (IP) law, rising technologies (such as additive manufacturing), innovation, and policies. The AdManI project will run during 2015-2016 and will be financed by Tekes.
Additive manufacturing (AM), colloquially known as 3D printing, is part of a technological revolution that is likely to change the balance between low-cost countries, such as China, and high-cost countries, such as Finland, by making production in high-cost countries more affordable. This in turn is hopefully going to move production back from low-cost countries. AM is a technology by which products are ‘printed’ instead of ‘manufactured’, which in itself radically changes the thinking in the manufacturing business. As AM is a comparatively new technology, most of the legal and policy issues have not been mapped and analysed yet. Such an analysis would not only show the possible policy-related and legal issues that would have to be dealt with, but also it could be used to create policies and legislation that would attract business to Finland. Indeed, Finland has the potential to become one of the leaders in developing and supporting AM platforms, especially due to the fact that Finnish industry is based on specialized products in small series where the advantages of AM stands out. To this end, laws and policies could be used as a competitive advantage in the competition between nations.
AdManI is a comprehensive research project that will create a platform for wide-ranging opportunities for new industry sectors and business in Finland and will develop solid innovative and topical theories, as well as new practical tools for promoting the renewal of manufacturing trough AM technology globally. With a focus on the Nordic AM industry and on the European IPR ecosystem, this research project will increase knowledge, reduce ambiguity, decrease transaction costs, increase administrative and judicial efficiency, and thus provide guidelines to the Finnish (and European) legislator and innovation policymakers. The focus is on AM, but the results will be useful for other emerging technologies as well. Indeed, the recommendations that will be drafted building upon the research findings from the AdManI project would pertain to national policies, national legislation, but also to individual businesses by pinpointing new business models that the law creates.