Recommendation Mechanism for Patent Trading Empowered by Heterogeneous Information Networks

Qi Wang, Wei Du, Jian Ma, and Xiuwu Liao
International Journal of Electronic Commerce,
Volume 23, Number 2, 2019, pp. 147-178.


The emerging patent trading platforms help to ease information asymmetry and trust issues during transaction, but a proactive recommendation mechanism that intelligently helps patent buyers identify relevant patents is still absent in the literature. This study proposes a recommendation mechanism for patent trading empowered by heterogeneous information networks (HIN) that integrates various patent information such as patent trading, patent invention, patent citation, patent ontology, and patent contents. Further, the meta-path-based similarity measure (i.e., AvgSim) is employed to calculate relevance and identify the different motivations of potential buyers in buying patents. We conducted two experiments to examine the performance of a proposed mechanism. An offline experiment on Public PatentsView database and Patent Assignment database show that the HIN-empowered recommendation outperforms baseline methods. We also implemented the proposed mechanism on a real-world trading platform ( The recommendation function achieves satisfying results by tracking users’ feedback, which further validates the usability of HIN-empowered recommendation in a patent trading context.

Key Words and Phrases: Heterogeneous information networks, patent recommendation, patent trading, recommendation systems, recommenders.