World Intellectual Property Organization

Frequently Asked Questions

About ASPI

The Access to Specialized Patent Information (ASPI) program was developed as a private-public partnership by the World Intellectual Property Organization in cooperation with its partners LexisNexis, Minesoft, Questel, Thomson Reuters and WIPS. The aim of this partnership is to support developing countries in more fully exploiting their innovative potential by leveraging the valuable information contained in patent documents to develop new solutions to technical problems faced at the local and international levels.

The partners are committed to maintaining ASPI program until 2015.

The countries which are eligible to participate in ASPI program are categorized in three Groups:

  • Group 1 represents least developed countries (LDCs) as defined by the United Nations;
  • Group 2 includes middle income countries as defined by the World Bank; and
  • Group 3 includes certain other developing countries.

The institutions in Group 1 countries can receive access at no cost. In Group 2 and Group 3 countries the institutions can receive access at a nominal cost (see section below on “Payment” for specific fees).

Eligibility

Not for profit academic and research institutions, as well as government institutions, including patent/IP offices in the countries listed under the Groups1, 2 and 3 are eligible.

Registration

If your institution meets the eligibility criteria, please complete the online registration form. Only one registration is required per institution. Please ensure that all of the fields in the registration form are completed with the information requested. Failure to complete all of the fields in the form will result in delays in processing your institution’s application.

It is strongly recommended to select one or maximum two database systems.

Once the completed registration form has been processed, you will receive an Institution User License for signature by the director and chief librarian or information officer (as appropriate) of your institution. The Institution User License outlines the rights and responsibilities associated with participation in ASPI.

Upon receipt of the signed Institution User License by WIPO, you will be contacted by the provider of the database system(s) you have selected. The provider may require your institution to agree to the terms and conditions for use of its database system and will provide you with the login details required to access the system.

In general, an email confirming receipt of your completed registration form will be sent to you within a few days of submission. If you do not receive such an email, please verify that you have provided an accurate email address for yourself and/or for your institution's director and chief librarian or information officer and check that the email confirming receipt of your completed registration form has not been treated as spam.

All members of a registered institution (researchers, teaching and administrative staff, students) and its on-site visitors are eligible to access as long as they abide by the guidelines set out in the Institution User License.

Payment

The institutions in Group 2 countries receive access at the cost of 1100 Swiss Francs per institution per calendar year for each product selected. However, the institutions in Group 2 countries benefit from a free trial access to their selected database system(s).

In Group 3 countries, only intellectual property offices can receive access at the cost of 3300 Swiss Francs per institution per calendar year for each product selected.

A free trial is available for institutions in Group 2 countries for a period of 12 months.

Institutions in Group 1 countries have free access to all database systems.

The participation fee is paid on an annual basis for the calendar year (from January through December). For example, if your institution's free trial period (for Group 2 countries) ends in February, you must pay the full participation fee in order to maintain access to your selected database systems.

An email will be sent to your institution with an invoice containing payment instructions. If you do not receive the invoice, please verify that you have provided an accurate email address for yourself on the registration form and check that the email with the invoice has not been treated as spam.

In general the participation fee is paid by bank transfer. Payment instructions are provided by WIPO along with the invoices for Group 2 countries or by the database system provider(s) for Group 3 countries.

The institutions in Group 2 countries pay their fee to WIPO.

Intellectual property offices in Group 3 pay their fee directly to the selected database system provider(s).

Getting started

In order to get started, you will need a computer connected to the Internet with a high-speed (56k baud rate or higher) connection. It is advisable to use an up-to-date version of your web browser in order to ensure full functionality of the selected database system(s).

If you know that your institution is registered, contact your chief librarian or information officer or your director. These are the officials who are provided with the login details. If you cannot locate the appropriate individual at your institution, contact aspi@wipo.int, and you will be given the name of the persons provided with this information.

Access to the selected database system(s) is ensured by the provider. In case of any technical problem inclusive of login malfunction, please contact the concerned database system provider.

Using ASPI

Login details may be shared with any member of a registered institution (researchers, teaching and administrative staff, students). They should not be shared with visitors or posted on the internet.

Please note that login details are only valid for a single concurrent access to the associated database system. This means that, while one person is using a set of login details, it cannot be used at the same time by another person.

Access to the patent database systems may only be provided from computers or other digital installations owned by or under the direct control of the institution or from personal computers owned personally by the employees, faculty or students of the institution.

You may download or print data subject to the terms and conditions for use of the database system.

Explore WIPO