FACTORS INFLUENCING THE VULNERABILITY OF MANUFACTURERS TO PRODUCT IMITATIONS
This paper describes the first step in a research project visioning towards an approach of “know-how protective product design“. Companies threatened or affected by product imitations increasingly dispose of technical measures against product imitation, supporting common measures of jurisdiction like patents and brands. Technical measures are possible in the fields of product design, manufacturing processes, logistics, and IT security. The effectiveness of such measures has not been investigated yet and shall be clarified in later steps of this research. In this paper, factors and possible values for these factors are identified that influence the vulnerability of technical goods developers and manufacturers to imitation of their products.