Collaborative Search and Examination (CS&E)

On 1 July 2018, the IP5 Offices launched a pilot project to test a collaborative approach to international searches under the PCT, in particular with a view to assessing the users’ interest for such a new PCT product and the expected efficiency gains for the participating offices.

The main features of this Collaborative Search and Examination (CS&E) pilot project are:

  • an applicant-driven approach: the applications processed during the pilot will be selected by applicants
  • a balanced workload distribution: all collaborating International Authorities will contribute to the establishment of each CS&E work product; each office will process approximately 100 international applications in its role as “main ISA” and approximately 400 international applications in its role as “peer ISA” over two years
  • a common set of quality and operational standards will be applied by all collaborating International Authorities when processing the PCT applications

The IP5 Offices agreed that at a later point in the pilot, they may also accept applications filed in languages other than English.

CS&E process model
CS&E process model


Further details on the concept and framework of this CS&E pilot project and the requirements for participation are available via the IP5 Offices’ respective websites:

Unless expressly stated otherwise by a particular receiving Office, participation in the pilot requires a request to participate to be submitted with the application as filed, either generated using the system provided within ePCT or by using the editable PDF file provided below, printed directly to PDF or printed and scanned to PDF, and then uploaded in the relevant electronic filing system.

Request to Participate in the IP5 PCT Collaborative Search & Examination Pilot PDF, Request to Participate in the IP5 PCT Collaborative Search & Examination Pilot 

Initially, the pilot will only accept international applications filed in English and consequently the English Form should normally be used. Versions in the other five languages expected to be supported at a later stage will be provided below.

Request to Participate in the IP5 PCT Collaborative Search & Examination Pilot in other languages:  Chinese PDF, Request to Participate in the IP5 PCT Collaborative Search & Examination Pilot French PDF, Request to Participate in the IP5 PCT Collaborative Search & Examination Pilot German PDF, Request to Participate in the IP5 PCT Collaborative Search & Examination Pilot