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Intangible capital & the laboratory notebook: its role and functions

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Intangible capital and laboratory notebook

Also called a “black book” by professionals and teams at Intangible Capital Value , the laboratory notebook is a particularly important document. Especially for an innovative company, it has essential functions which we will discuss below.

What is a laboratory notebook?

The laboratory notebook has many names: “black book”, “project notebook”, “research journal” or even “engineer’s logbook”. It allows you to keep a very precise, written record of the various stages that constitute the research and innovation process. The laboratory notebook makes it possible to create material proof of the origin of an innovation or invention. Particularly during the development process of a service or product. Both inexpensive and efficient, it is now an essential tool.

A scientific logbook

A laboratory notebook (or “black book”, “project notebook”, “research journal”, “engineer’s logbook” etc.), is similar to a scientific logbook. It can be either a digital or physical notebook, at the company’s discretion. It includes a complete and chronological written record which documents the history of the research work. Most often, the notebook begins with the initial ideas of the creator. It fills up as the work progresses, until it is finalized.

A laboratory notebook constitutes legal evidence in litigation. However, for it to qualify as admissible evidence, it must comply with various formalities as set out by the Ministry of Higher Education and Research, as well as the Curie Network. In the context of deciding the formalities to be complied with, these institutions collaborate with the INPI as well as various public research organizations. The laboratory notebook must have a specific identity number and its users and owners must be clearly identified. In addition, each footer must reserve a free space to date, number and sign it. Finally, the ink must be indelible, and there must be no evidence of pages that have been torn out/removed.

Uses of the laboratory notebook

The laboratory notebook is a tool that supports innovation throughout its various stages. It is inseparable from the invention itself and can have numerous benefits for a company that takes the care to write it. But what other uses does a laboratory notebook have?

The laboratory notebook has several uses which make it such an invaluable and interesting tool. Firstly, it should be reiterated that it is not only a scientific logbook, but it also constitutes proof of ownership/origin in the event of litigation or patent filing. The notebook makes it possible to prove the date of creation and innovation in a tangible way, as well as identify those responsible for this innovation.

In addition, the laboratories of innovative SMEs use the black book in the Research and Development department. This document promotes the transmission of knowledge between the different bodies of professionals working on a project. Engineers, researchers, technicians, doctoral students, interns, etc.

The various elements that the black book records about an invention make it possible to better understand the opportunity represented by the filing of a patent. In addition, the notebook itself makes it possible to simplify the drafting of a patent as well as the procedures to obtain it.

Lab notebooks are excellent tools to facilitate partnerships. They are generally used to estimate the different technical and scientific contributions of each partner, but also to specify the resources committed within collaborations and partnerships.

The experts of Intangible Capital Value are at your disposal and would be happy to assist you in legally protecting your innovations. Do not hesitate to contact us for more information.

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Articles from the same author :  Erwan Coatnoan de Kerdu, Author at Startup Info


I'm a passionate full-time blogger. I love writing about startups, how they can access key resources, avoid legal mistakes, respond to questions from angel investors as well as the reality check for startups. Continue reading my articles for more insight.

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