USPTO, U.S. Administration work to leverage artificial intelligence’s promise—and minimize its potential problems 


When it comes to artificial intelligence, there is enormous potential for our country and for solving world problems—but there are significant risks as well. To shape the future of AI, we must act quickly but also thoughtfully and with your input.

The Biden Administration has moved with urgency to seize the tremendous promise and manage the risks posed by AI. It is developing an executive order that will ensure the federal government is doing everything in its power to advance safe, secure and trustworthy AI, and manage its risks to individuals and society.

Our Administration will also pursue bipartisan legislation to help America lead the way in responsible innovation.

The USPTO—and our sister agencies within the Department of Commerce, as well as the U.S. Copyright Office—play a critical role in this work.

One of the USPTO’s top priorities is to ensure that the United States maintains its leadership in innovation, especially in emerging technologies (ET) such as AI. Our AI efforts align closely with the Administration’s whole-of-government approach to AI, including the National AI Initiative that seeks to advance U.S. leadership in AI.

That is why, under my leadership, the USPTO created the AI/ET Partnership. Over the last year, the USPTO’s AI/ET Partnership has worked closely with the AI/ET community to gather public feedback through a series of meetings on topics related to AI and innovation, biotech, and intellectual property (IP) policy.

We are integrating AI technologies into our next-generation tools to enhance the quality and efficiency of patent and trademark examination. Our examiners have conducted over 1.3 million searches using AI search tools. These tools also find potential foreign prior art relevant to their examination of a patent application by searching patent documents from over 60 different countries. We are assessing approaches for making these AI search tools publicly available.

Also, we are also working to extend the search to images for design patents. And our Trademarks organization is also looking to develop AI capabilities in image searching, classification, and identification of goods that will better assist our more than 750 trademark examining attorneys examining applications for trademark registrations.

We have several user-facing AI initiatives in development and public beta, to help the public better navigate the patent and trademark systems. The USPTO Virtual Assistant enhances customer service by providing immediate, targeted answers to common questions. Though this is available on several Trademark pages, we will be adding the tool to more USPTO pages soon.

Our September 27 AI/ET Partnership Meeting explored the many ways that AI is shaping the work of both the USPTO and those who practice before us, along with the role of USPTO data in advancing state-of-the-art AI research and AI throughout the innovation economy.

For questions or feedback on our AI efforts, or to suggest a topic for a future meeting, contact [email protected].

For the entire story and relevant links, see

Our Inventor Search Assistant tool allows you to search for your own prior art to help determine if your invention is patentable. Learn more in this Inventors Digest article: