FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE – 14 February 2012. Washington, DC. The International Intellectual Property Institute (IIPI) conducted a three-day seminar from 17-19 January on specialized intellectual property rights (IPR) courts around the world and their role in promoting economic development. The seminar, co-hosted by the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO), was held at the USPTO’s Global Intellectual Property Academy in Alexandria, VA, and was attended by judges, lawyers, policymakers, and private sector stakeholders from over twenty countries.

The first day began with a keynote address by David Kappos, Under Secretary of Commerce for Intellectual Property and Director of USPTO. IIPI then presented the results of its study on specialized IPR courts. The most ambitious report on IPR courts to date, the study identifies and catalogs specialized IPR courts to create a comprehensive database of all existing and proposed regimes. The study evaluates the impact of these regimes on the effective and efficient adjudication of IPR-related disputes to develop a set of effective practices guidelines for the establishment and administration of specialized IPR courts. The seminar provided IIPI with the opportunity to gather information and feedback from the attendees that it will incorporate into the final study and effective practices guidelines.

The morning of the second day focused on the role of alternative dispute resolution in IP litigation and featured a speech by Kenneth Feinberg, Founder and Managing Partner, Feinberg Rozen, LLP. This was followed by a comparative study session among panelists from the United States, Japan, the United Kingdom, and Greece on how judges and experts with technical knowledge can help the court resolve complex IP cases. Highlights also included presentations by Robert W. Holleyman III, President and CEO of the Business Software Alliance, on the politics of IP enforcement and by Judge Dennis Byron, President of the Caribbean Court of Justice, on practical considerations for the courts.

Day three featured a discussion on the administrative adjudication of IP cases by Jorge Amigo Castañeda, Vice Chairman of IIPI and former Director of the Mexican Institute of Industrial Property. Representatives from the Philippines then described the need for specialized IPR Courts and their experiences establishing such a court in the Philippines. The program concluded with a fieldtrip to the Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit, where Judge Pauline Newman gave a presentation and provided the attendees with a tour of the court.

Image © 2012 Amber Ariate