What is meant by the requirement of Inventive Step?
In order to be patentable, a finding should not only be novel but also involve an inventive step. Generally speaking this means that 'with respect to the prior art, the finding would not be obvious for the person skilled in the art'.
While the test of novelty is often fairly straightforward, the assessment of inventive step may be more difficult. The European patent office has developed the “problem-solution approach” to determine inventive step. Basically this involves determining which problem is addressed by the invention and whether a person in the technical field at the time of filing would be directly pointed to the solution offered by the invention, based on the information available to him from the prior art.