Navigation

Dr Nicola Searle

Staff details

PositionLecturer
Email n.searle (@gold.ac.uk)
Phone+44 (0)20 717 3210
Dr Nicola Searle

Dr. Nicola Searle is an economist who specialises in the economics of intellectual property and the creative industries. She joined ICCE in Summer 2015. Nicola is an Honorary Research Fellow at the Institute for Capitalising on Creativity (ICC) at the School of Management, University of St Andrews.

Dr. Searle joined the UK Intellectual Property Office (IPO) economics team in 2013 until 2015 as an Economic Advisor, and covered the economic analysis of trademarks, designs, 3D printing, and aspects of copyright.

Prior to her role at the IPO, Nicola was the lead Associate on the Moving Targets project at the School of Arts, Media & Computer Games at Abertay University from 2010-2012.  Moving Targets, supported by the Scottish Funding Council, with Edinburgh College of Art and the Universities of Edinburgh and Abertay, is a knowledge exchange project focusing on new models for digital media. Nicola also served as Academic Supervisor for two Knowledge Transfer Projects (KTP) with ICC and Creative Scotland on the film industry and use of IP by Scottish creative businesses. In 2010-2011, Nicola was an AHRC/ESRC placement fellow at the IPO where she completed a project on Changing Business Models in the Creative Industries.

From 2006-2010 Nicola was a doctoral candidate, tutor and lecturer at the School of Economics & Finance, University of St Andrews. During this period she also worked as research assistant at the School of Arts, Media & Computer Games at Abertay. Here she developed the School’s industry engagement strategy, and ran a research project assessing the computer games development industry's demand for graduate skills. In addition, she ran a part-time social photography business in St Andrews. Before her academic career, Nicola was an associate at Goldman Sachs in the US and Italy for four years.

PhD in Economics, University of St Andrews, 2010

Her thesis, “Intellectual Property & Economics: The Use of Trade Secrets & the Economic Espionage Act,” is an empirical analysis of trade secrets, their role in innovation and in firm growth, and the valuation of trade secrets.  The work incorporates applied empirical analysis of unique data set using econometrics and statistics.

MSc in International Strategy and Economics, University of St Andrews, 2006

BSFS in International Economics, 2000, Georgetown University (U.S.A.)

Teaching

Dr. Searle teaches Theories of Capital, a module detailing interdisciplinary approaches to concepts of capital, on the MACCE program. She regularly guest lecturers and presents at other institutions.

Research

Dr. Searle’s primary focus is on the economics of Intellectual Property and the Creative Industries. In this, she researches the economics of trade secrets and economic espionage; business models, IP & digital media; and IP in the textile industries.  

Dr. Searle’s future plans entail examining the economics of Geographical Indications (GI) and extending her business models and IP analysis to other sectors including fashion and the wider digital economy.

External activities

Nicola is the economics blogger for the UK-based IP blog, The IPKat. There she regularly blogs on topics concerning economics, policy, innovation and IP.

Nicola regularly interacts with governments and policy bodies.  She has written reports for the UK IPO and frequently engages with the World Intellectual Property Organisation (WIPO) where she has participated in workshops in Geneva, The Gambia, Malawi, Rwanda and Senegal.


Publications 

Books

Searle, Nicola C. and M. Brassell (forthcoming 2016), Economic Approaches to Intellectual Property, Oxford University Press

Peer-reviewed Articles

Searle, N. (forthcoming November 2016) “Economics of Trade Marks,” in The Trademark Reporter, 106:6. 

Reid, G., Searle, N., and S. Vishnubhakat (2015) “What's it worth to keep a secret? Intellectual property protection under the EEA” 13 Duke Law & Technology Review

Franklin, M., Searle, N., Stoyanova, D. and Townley, B. (2013), Innovation in the Application of Digital Tools for Managing Uncertainty: The Case of UK Independent Film. Creativity and Innovation Management, 22: 320–333. doi: 10.1111/caim.12029

Searle, N., (2012) “The Criminalization of the Theft of Trade Secrets: An Analysis of the Economic Espionage Act,” IP Theory, 2:2, Available at www.repository.law.indiana.edu/ipt/vol2/iss2/2

Book chapters

Searle, N. (forthcoming 2017) “The Hard Sell: Economics and IP Policy,” in Waelde, C., & A. Brown, Research Handbook on Intellectual Property and Creative Industries, Edward Elgar.

Searle, N. (forthcoming 2016) “Business Models,” in Jefferies, J., & S. Kember, Whose Book Is It Anyway?, CREATe Anthology. 

Searle, N. (forthcoming 2016) “Cultural Economics,” in Durrer, V., Miller, T. & D. O’Brien, Routledge Companion to Cultural Policy, Routledge

Searle, N., and G. White, (2013) “Business Models for the Digital Creative Economy,” in Towse, R. & C. Handke, Handbook of the Digital Creative Economy, Edward Elgar 

White, G. and N. Searle, (2013) “Commercial business models for a fast changing industry,” in Hotho, S. & N. MacGregor, Changing the Rules of the Game, Palgrave MacMillan

Government reports

Searle, N., (2011) “Changing Business Models in the Creative Industries,” U.K. Intellectual Property Office available at https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/changing-business-models-in-the-creative-industries

Publications

Book Section

Chapter 5: Business models
Searle, Nicola and White, Gregor. 2013. Chapter 5: Business models. In: Ruth Towse and Christian Handke, eds. Handbook on the Digital Creative Economy. Gloucestershire: Edward Elgar, pp. 45-56. ISBN 978 1 78100 487 6

Commercial business models for a fast changing industry
White, Gregor and Searle, Nicola. 2013. Commercial business models for a fast changing industry. In: Sabine Hotho and Neil McGregor, eds. Changing the Rules of the Game. London: Palgrave Macmillan UK, pp. 28-47. ISBN 978-1-349-33819-1

Article

What's It Worth to Keep a Secret
Reid, Gavin C; Searle, Nicola and Vishnubhakat, Saurabh. 2015. What's It Worth to Keep a Secret. Duke law and technology review, 13, pp. 116-161.

Innovation in the Application of Digital Tools for Managing Uncertainty: The Case of UK Independent Film
Franklin, Michael; Searle, Nicola; Stoyanova, Dimitrinka and Townley, Barbara. 2013. Innovation in the Application of Digital Tools for Managing Uncertainty: The Case of UK Independent Film. Creativity and Innovation Management, 22(3), pp. 320-333. ISSN 0963-1690

The Criminalization of the Theft of Trade Secrets: An Analysis of the Economic Espionage Act
Searle, Nicola. 2012. The Criminalization of the Theft of Trade Secrets: An Analysis of the Economic Espionage Act. IP Theory, 2(2), pp. 33-51.

Report

Changing Business Models in the Creative Industries: The cases of Televison, Computer Games and Music Executive Summary
Searle, Nicola. 2011. Changing Business Models in the Creative Industries: The cases of Televison, Computer Games and Music Executive Summary. Other. UK Intellectual Property Office, https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/310293/ipresearch-creativeind-full-201110.pdf.